Camel Book Drive

Donate To Kenya’s Mobile Library

Helping Bring Books Where They’ve Never Been Before


Camel library update, Dec. 6, 2008

Thanks to all who have donated books or money as we enter the holiday season.  We have successfully stocked the camel bookmobile! Both the Garissa and Wajir branches have plenty of books, so additional contributions are going directly to nomadic schools in the region. Please see the email from Mr. Farah below.

Dear Masha,

The book drive was so successful that Mrs Warfa received over 7,000 books. She  is now experiencing space problems and is requesting that we move the book drive to another needy institution. There are many needy nomadic schools that are around Garissa which I believe would appreciate book donations. Could we therefore use their umbrella body, which is: Nomadic Schools, P.O. Box 1204 –70100, Garissa. Kenya.


Meanwhile, Masha, I wish you and your family all the best and remember now you have a leader who hails from Kogelo, and we hope he will market and remember Kenya.


Thank you, Mr. Farah 

Mr. Farah also hopes to have news in January regarding his efforts to collect traditional stories and bind them into books that will travel with the camel library.

MANY THANKS for all your efforts.


Also, please see the email below from one donor.

Masha – I sent about 8-10 books and about 12 or so nice magazines this afternoon.  I will send some more later in the month.  I do want to say that I sent at least 4 very old books, but they are lovely children’s stories, some by Louisa Mae Alcott.  I hope everyone enjoys them as much as I did growing up and even now.

I was sending some magazines from the church college I attended, but I read the list of what not to send before I did, so I took them back out.  Thanks for the help in figuring out what to send.  It is easier to send used books since the postage is so high for me.  I am 71 years old and retired.  But I still want to help all I can.  Thank you again for giving us a place to share with those who really need it.  My husband always said that when you can give someone else something, you are not poor.

Georgia Wessling, Shelbina, MO


The camel book drive began as an efforts by authors in February 2007 and has broadened to include generous booklovers of all stripes, including businesses, libraries, publishers, book groups and individual readers.


November 21, 2007 Posted by | Authors | 40 Comments

Emails From Garissa Librarian Mr. Farah


Feb. 12, 2008

Dear Masha, I am sorry for keeping quiet. In fact I was down with malaria, a tropical disease that is very common here after it rains. I have now recovered though a little bit weak. Mrs. Warfa has some boxes in post office that she expects to pick soon and the post office people still insist for their payment with no convincing reasons but I have written to postal headquarters in Nairobi for clarification. Indeed you could directly send donations to Mrs. Warfa.  

I spent the better part of last week in Garissa since the university was still closed but at the moment I am in Nairobi and expect to start attending lectures tomorrow. It is normal for Kenyan universities to close indefinitely whenever there is political crisis since regimes fear regular students going to the streets. For sure Garissa is indeed a better place for me and my family, and were it not for the university, I would not have stayed a single day (in Nairobi) because of its rampant crime. At the moment, because of the ongoing mediation, it’s very calm and peaceful and surely our great hopes lie on this mediation. Wish you the best, Mr. Farah


Jan. 19, 2008

Dear Masha, Thank you very much for your concern. In fact, there is a lot of tension and riots in Nairobi at the moment but we are soon expecting the arrival of Mr. Kofi Annan to initiate a dialogue to end the impasse and that is where our hopes lie. Without dialogue, we are in great danger, and Kenya might go the Somalia way. Meanwhile it is our prayer that the dialogue succeeds. Wishing you the best, Mr. Farah

Jan. 7, 2008

Thank you for your concern. My family and I are very ok and doing well. I am still in Garissa but will leave for Nairobi tomorrow. So far, Warfa has received 440 copies of books and she told me that though she has an email address, there are no internet providers in Wajir and hence she can only send and read an email while in Garissa or Nairobi. I have forwarded cash donations received and tomorrow she is buying a big camel. Meanwhile I wish you and your family a prosperous and happy year.


Jan. 3, 2008 Dear Masha, Thanks for your concern. In fact, the situation in Kenya is not good, especially in the Rift Valley, Nyanza and the Coast provinces. Garissa and environs are relatively calm, though everything is at a standstill. Offices and busineses still closed.  The good news is that I am today seeing donations of 350 dollars from 3 different donors to purchase a camel for Wajir library and will forward the same to madam M .Warfa when banks open and also forward to you names of the donors. Meanwhile, I wish you all the best. Thank you.  Mr. Farah


November 5, 2007 Dear Masha, We have received 3,500 books so far in Garissa for the camel library and 150 in Wajir! Please pass on thanks to all the donors and let them know that their contributions will help a child in this part of the world who would not otherwise be able to afford a book to read. We very much appreciate the books that are being sent. Thank you! Best to you and Briana, Mr. Farah


August 18, 2007

Last week I visited the Wajir and Bute libraries, since they share a lot with us. In Wajir, they have replicated the camel mobile library. They now serve large areas but unfortunately they do not have enough books. They are also requesting for books for their camel mobile library, especially children books  The librarian in charge is Mrs Maryan Osman Warfa,  P.O. BOX 217, WAJIR  Kenya. We would appreciate your kind help as the people are more in need.The good news is that we have up until today received more than 2,000 copies of books and therefore can say that we have enough camels, book boxes as well as books to serve our clientele. We have processed quite number of the books for use and continue to do so as they come so that they could be put into circulation.    We say once again thank you so much for your effort. Thank you, Mr. Farah


July 9, 2007

We have just completed a week of stock taking. Books are coming and so far we have received 948. … We also have received cash donations and we intend to pay the deposit for tents for shade and are receiving a she-camel tomorrow.  Thank you very much. Mr. Farah


June 2007

Thank you for your last email. I could not reply earlier as I traveled to a place called Bute, which is 600 km away from Garissa. So far, we have received 457 books. We have also received donations toward buying a camel. As soon as we can, we shall buy a she-camel that we would like to introduce to our male camel for the purpose of breeding.  In July, we intend to locate a village where we can set up a satellite library. We shall keep you posted.


April 27, 2007

Mr. Farah emailed to say he has received more than 250 books so far. He is very grateful, and also mentioned that he is excited about the prospect of expanding the camel library to include books in Somali. If you’d like to donate a book in Somali, please check here or here. Mr. Farah also says the camel library is hoping to reach more settlements by starting a new static library in the village of Sankuri, about 25 kilometers north of Garissa. Three camels will be placed there permanently, and this will give the camel library greater reach. Your book donations are helping make this possible. For those who might want to help purchase a tent to provide shade for the camel bookmobile (see email below), Mr. Farah is going to try to find out how donors can deposit money directly to the tent manufacturing company. He hopes to provide that information soon. 


March 19, 2007

Dear Masha, The good news is that we have already started receiving boxes of books from USA. Our biggest needs beside the books at the moment are: 1) One 30ft x 16ft tent costing about US $2500, and 2) 12 book boxes costing about $1000 total. It is okay if you post my email address so that people could contact us directly: rmfarah2001 at Pass our warm regards to your daughter and your youngest child and tell him his books with the greeting are in good use  – ALL STAFF ARE ALSO SAYING HALO MASHA. Thank you. Hoping to hear from you. Your, Mr. Farah

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