Teen Hero Gives Thousands of Books to Kids in Need

From California to Missouri, Megan Mettler has travelled the country donating and delivering.

Teen hero Megan Mettler gives children's books to schools, hospitals and shelters. (Photo c/o Mary Mettler)
Jenny Inglee is a Los Angeles-based journalist and the Education Editor at TakePart.

When 13-year-old Megan Mettler volunteered at a local soup kitchen in Southern California, she saw that homelessness affects not only adults, but also children. If she was in the same situation, she says, "I'd want to have books to read."

This was the catalyst that led her to gather and deliver 17,000 books over the course of one year to kids in need.

In addition to shelters, she says she donates children's books to hospitals and schools.

"I talked to a bunch of teachers and principals and they said they don't have librarians. Their kids don't have library time, so it's really hard for them to get books."

Her goal when she started was to give a few hundred books, but once word got out, the books poured in.

One of the many drops she did was in Joplin, Missouri. After the massive storm struck the town this year, she and her family went to help clean up the debris and deliver books.

"We had a bunch of books in the garage at that point and thought what better place to bring them than Joplin. We talked to people there and they said they already needed books before the tornado and now they just needed them so much more."

Megan plans to continue her book drives because, she says, "There will always be a need for books, and there are so many out there that can always have new homes."

To donate books and contribute to Megan's efforts, send an email to kidsreadbookdrive@yahoo.com.

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