Each contributor given photograph of him/her placing the books

“As parents we are often reluctant to sell the books our children used when they were young, but we also wish they could be put to some use subsequently. This book donation drive is an excellent way to help others."

This observation by Sakina Bakir, a senior citizen, who donated a good collection of quiz books sports books and encyclopaedias, reflected the sentiment of many donors at the ‘Aviva Great Wall of Education' presented by The Hindu, at the Express Avenue Mall, Royapettah, on Monday.

According to the organisers, as of Monday evening, nearly 30,000 books had been donated. The drive was inaugurated on Sunday.

The range of books is wide – from primary school books to yellow pages to fantasy novels and colouring books. On one hand, in a heart-warming gesture, a group consisting of three-year old children happily parted with their scrap books while on the other a contributor donated an entire series on the Indian wildlife.

Prema Daniel, an avid traveller, who has bought books from every country she had been to, donated 40 travel and picture books.

“I was always curious about the places I visited and learnt a lot from these books. I hope the children who get them benefit similarly,” she said.

For P. Aishwarya, a second year medical student, donating around 300 children's magazines brought back the “special memories” each storybook held.

“I want the kids to build their memories with books,” she said.

Every contributor is being given a photograph of him or her placing the donated books on the wall.

A musical event and interactive activities to promote awareness on sharing knowledge were also part of the programme.

The special attraction of the event on Monday was the visit of actor Karthi who urged people to donate as many books as possible before September 9.

“We all have books at home, and it is pretty convenient to donate them,” he said. “An act like this will go a long way in spreading cheer to many under-privileged children,” he added.

Meanwhile, schools are doing their bit to remind students to bring their old books to school and drop them in the cartons placed for the purpose.

For the primary school children, the school diary is the best reminder to inform the parents about the initiative. Many other schools are making it a point to make an announcement in the school assembly as well as in the evening before the children leave.

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