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Sri Lankan Book Drive

I’m the General Secretary of Sri Lanka Astronomical Association. I’m contacting you because we have briefly communicated over the past years.

I would like to bring your attention to a project I co-founded with Prof. John Clarke of Boston University, MA. It’s called “Astro Book Drive” - mainly focuses on improving Astronomy Education in Developing Countries.  There are many small astronomy societies in these countries run by amateur astronomers. They conduct plenty of programs throughout the year and the participation is immense, from kids in early age to adults. But lack of resources always comes against having a good education or conducting a program.  There are plenty of excess reading materials lying in our offices or the libraries with no one to get use of them. These reading materials worth a lot for the students and educators in developing countries.   
Astro Book Drive How does it work? 
“Astro Book Drive” will be contacting various donors around the world who are interested in getting involved with the project. And same time we will select astronomy clubs from developing countries that would deserve to have such a donation to improve the knowledge.  Once a party agrees to run a book drive, we will assign them to a particular astronomy club. The donors will send the materials directly to the club.  There will be a follow up for the donated materials to keep track of how they are used and to put them into best practices.  
How to run a book drive
Personally or with a group you can get involve. There are few ways to run a book drive.  *You might already have plenty of astronomy books and magazines which you are looking for a safe home to be donated. If so, you can personally run a book drive yourself. *If you are affiliated to an astronomy department or an institution, you can get the undergraduates to run a book drive as a project. *If you are affiliated with an association, you can run a book drive by collecting materials from the members. This could be done easily through your regular meetings, email list or the newsletter.  For more info on “getting involve” please visit http://astrodrive.lakdiva.net/involve/   
What to donate?
You can donate any reading materials such as college text books, back issues of magazines (Sky&Telescope, Astronomy, etc…), even you can gift them a magazine subscriptions.   
What would be the cost?
The shipping of books could cost moderate price. The donating party would need to cover the shipping cost. Please note that these societies we are trying to help here are in no position to cover any shipping cost themselves. The cost of shipping and related expenses would have to cover by the donor itself. But please don’t let you not run a Book Drive simply because you can’t cover the cost of shipping. Donating reading materials would mean a lot to students coming from developing countries as they lack many resources to get a proper education.   
Why you should run a book drive?
 As coming from a developing country, I personally know how hard and expensive it is to get hold of good astronomy books and reading materials. Running a book drive to send books across to a small astronomy club would mean a lot to the students there.  Astro Book Drive hopes to get the excess books and reading material across to those who in need. In this great task of improving the astronomy education in developing countries, I would like to invite you to run a book drive through your department /institution/ library/ association and join the effort and make a difference.   Please see the “Call for run a book drive” at http://astrodrive.lakdiva.net/Call_for_book_drive.pdf  Astro Book Drive - http://astrodrive.lakdiva.net/  Look forward to hear from you.   Thilina Heenatigala General Secretary Sri Lanka Astronomical Association  Co-founder of Astro Book Drive  
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 (Mr.) Thilina Heenatigala.
 General Secretary
 Sri Lanka Astronomical Association
http://aalk.lakdiva.net

National Node Secretary
International Year of Astronomy 2009 -Sri Lanka
http://aalk.lakdiva.net/iya2009

Astronomy & Space Study Center - Coordinator
Royal College Astronomical Society <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_College_Astronomical_Society> <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_College_Astronomical_Society>   - Adviser
Space Renaissance Initiative <http://www.spacerenaissance.org/> <http://www.spacerenaissance.org/>    - Vice President
100 Hours Astronomy <http://www.100hoursofastronomy.org/> <http://www.100hoursofastronomy.org/>   - National Organizer
Sidewalk Astronomers <http://www.sidewalkastronomers.us/> <http://www.sidewalkastronomers.us/>   - National Organizer
StarPeace <http://www.starpeace.org/> <http://www.starpeace.org/>   - Ambassador

 e. thilina.heenatigala@yahoo.com
 p. +94 (0) 716 245 545
 w. http://thilinaheenatigala.blogspot.com
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