Book Link

Location: Ethiopia

Subject: Education

Dates: 2002

Related ACE Cultural Tours: Ethiopia


To provide schools in Ethiopia with educational resources.

Project History

It was an inspirational and fortuitous ACE Study Tour to Ethiopia that led to the formation of book-link. ACE Study Tours have travelled to Ethiopia since 1996 despite various widespread reservations about travel in the country. Every trip has proved to be memorable and enjoyable, whatever ‘unusual’s’ have been encountered on the way. It was on one of these excursions which Professor Richard Beard and his wife Irène were in attendance; shocked and appalled, as were most, at the ill-equipped schools with no materials, barely desks or chairs and merely and blackboard and chalk, they were motivated to make a difference. Knowing well the throw-away culture of the British education system they discussed the possibility of sending redundant British textbooks out to Ethiopia. With a plan in mind they were comfortably settled on the plane (which was delayed of course!) back to Addis Ababa, and making pleasant conversation with the ‘VIP’s’ next to them when they realised, to their delight, that they happened to be sat next to Ethiopia’s Minister of Education! They returned to her house and discussed the implementation of the Beards’ already formulated plan and since this meeting book-link has dispatched over 3 million books to schools in Ethiopia. Irène still directs the company and actively ensures funding for the expense of shipping the books, and appropriate selection, distribution and despatch occurs.

Project & ACE

Of course since book-link emerged from one of ACE’s own tours, the ACE Foundation was, naturally, happy to contribute to this excellently resourceful educational scheme. The success of this charity is a tribute to the forward thinkers of ACE Study Tour’s customers.