Maspeth students raising funds to help build library in Africa

File photo/QNS

The students of the National Honor Society at Maspeth High School (MHS) are doing their part to help bring a community library to a village in Ghana by hosting a book drive at their school.

The society is collaborating with the African Library Project, an organization that coordinates book drives in the United States and partners with African schools and villages to create small libraries. The students are looking to collect 1,000 books of preschool to seventh-grade level to send to the African Library Project’s warehouse in New Orleans. From there, the books will be shipped to Ghana.

“We were excited to do a book drive,” said Anda Stafa, president of the National Honor Society at MHS. “As a kid I loved books, so I really wanted us to have a successful book drive and send books to kids who can enjoy them. It is a great opportunity for them to learn life lessons and read some fun books.”

MHS has nearly reached its book collection goal, already having amassed 850 books from students, parents and community members since the book drive started in November 2015.

“It’s great being able to give people from the other side of the world an education that they may not have had access to otherwise,” said Leonela Tutasig, vice president of the National Honor Society at MHS.

With the goal in their sights, the National Honor Society is now asking the community to help raise funds to allow the students to ship the books to the African Library Project by March 30, the final day of the drive.

“In order to ship this amount of books, we have to raise funds to cover shipping and handling costs,” said Grace Polson, National Honor Society adviser. “The expenses to ship these books to Ghana will cost us $750. Our hope is to have the payments finalized by the end of March, so we want to reach out to our community and our loved ones to ask for as much help as we can receive. A small donation goes a long way.”

Those interested in donating can drop off books at the school’s lobby or main office, located at 54-40 74th St. in Maspeth, or make a financial donation at GoFundMe.