PBS Premiere: July 19, 2011Check the broadcast schedule »

Links & Books


Biblioburro: behind-the-scenes | Ayoka
Ayoka Productions provides a brief introduction to Soriano's past and his inspiration for starting the Biblioburro project.

CNN Heroes - Luis Soriano
CNN chose Luis Soriano as one of their 2010 Heroes of the Year in the Championing Children category.

The New York Times: "Acclaimed Colombian Institution Has 4,800 Books and 10 Legs"
This profile of Soriano by Simon Romero describes the children who eagerly await the books and appreciate the sacrifices he makes to bring them.

The Washington Post: "A Four-Legged Drive To Help Rural Readers"
Monte Reel writes about the weekly journeys made by Soriano, the rise of other Biblioburros and a reading of The Three Little Pigs, complete with pig masks for the children.

El Mundo (Spain): "Recorre Colombia en burro para enseñar a leer"
This Spanish-language article focuses on the dangers Soriano braved on his book-lending route and his trip to America to be interviewed on Larry King Live.

This Spanish-language page includes information about the spread of the Biblioburro project to the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in northern Colombia, where donkeys are used to distribute books between eight schools.


Book Donation

Directory of Book Donation Programs
A directory of organizations that donate books and other materials to libraries and schools all over the world.

Book Aid International
This organization has provided millions of books to communities in sub-Saharan Africa since 1954.

Books for America
This Washington, D.C. area organization builds libraries in schools, shelters and prisons and supports local reading programs.

Biblionef distributes books to children in disadvantaged areas around the globe, including Suriname, Ghana, Sri Lanka and Latvia.

International Book Project
The International Book Project donates books to developing countries and under-served communities within the United States.

Global Literacy Project
The Global Literacy Project donates books and other materials and works towards the creation of a self-sustaining culture of reading.

UNESCO Libraries Portal
This page provides links to library websites around the world.


Biblioteca Nacional de Colombia
This public library system has managed to expand its reach even to the most marginal regions of Colombia.
This project of the University of Pennsylvania conducts and gathers research on literacy initiatives. Of special note on the website is an interview with groundbreaking educator Paulo Freire, who specialized in educating poor and rural populations.

Literacy Information and Communication System
A search-by-zip-code tool assists in finding literacy initiatives in or near specific communities.

National Center for Family Literacy
This national organization provides a wide array of resources for volunteers and professionals seeking to support family literacy initiatives.

Human Rights in Colombia

Human Rights Watch. "World Report 2011: Colombia"
This international human rights organization issues annual reports on many of the world's nations. This link is to its 2011 report on Colombia.

The website of this international women's organization focused on human rights includes information on the group's special project "Colombia: Building a Culture of Peace."

UNICEF. "Colombia"
The UNICEF page on Colombia provides recent news and statistics about the country and efforts to improve the lives of children there.

United Nations. "The Universal Declaration of Human Rights"
Article 26 of this document defines education, including free education at the elementary level, as a basic human right.

United States-Colombia Relations

Just the Facts
A joint project of the Center for International Policy, the Latin America Working Group Education Fund and the Washington Office on Latin America, Just the Facts is a citizen's guide to understanding the United States' military relationship with Latin America and the Caribbean.

U.S. Department of State. "Background Note: Colombia"
The U.S. Department of State provides background information on Colombia, including a section on U.S.-Colombian relations.

PBS Online NewsHour. "Colombia's Civil War: U.S. Role"
This history of the War on Drugs in Colombia focuses on counter-narcotics initiatives and the powerful influence of drug cartels.