We have discovered that it is even a bigger challenge in Laos than in Vietnam to get books to children in the villages. Not only have many village children not seen a picture book, but there are few in print throughout the country.
An organization called Big Brother Mouse is working towards correcting that situation. This small NGO encourages young adults to write children's stories and also publishes and prints the books. Many of the books include the English translation on the page. The books are introduced to the villages in much the same way as we do with Global Village Foundation in Vietnam.
Happily, JoAn and I found the office of BBM through a booklet called "Stay Another Day" which promotes responsible travel, supporting locally made, fair trade crafts and environmentally friendly tours ( such as the elephant ride we took). BBM makes it very easy for short term visitors such as ourselves to be involved. In the office there are bundles of books, which one can buy on the spot and put in the box. As soon as the box is full it is delivered to a village. How easy and thanks to our friends on Salt Spring, we were able to contribute a very big bundle to the box!!! Thank you from the kids of Laos.