Used Books for Katrina

Local resident collects books for Katrina victims

Published: 09 October 2007 Written by Ivana Dukanovic – Special to the Town CrierLos Altos resident Sandy Goldstein collected more than 50 boxes of books donated by Los Altos elementary and junior high schools to distribute to children affected by Hurricane Katrina — then tried to ship them to Louisiana. That introduced a problem. The joy on the faces of the children who receive the books might be priceless, but the shipping certainly is not. Shipping companies charge from $1,200 to $1,700 for the lot, putting Goldstein in a difficult situation.”Channeling these books to the right place has proved to be very expensive,” Goldstein said. “But the important thing is to … get these books shipped.”Goldstein sent a flier to the schools asking students to rummage through their libraries at home and pick a gently used book or two to donate. She suggested the children enclose personal notes inside the front covers.Public, private and parochial schools in Los Altos responded enthusiastically. Springer Elementary, St. Simon, Montclaire, Pinewood and Blach Intermediate schools brought the bulk of the donations. Springer contributed 28 boxes of used picture and chapter books for the cause.”I want this to be a win-win situation,” Goldstein said. “Kids in Los Altos have so much, and I think they would really gain from a giving experience.”The books including the notes from Los Altos students are designated for children in the Lower Ninth Ward, a new emergency center and a part of the Emergency Communities Organization in New Orleans, and the Martin Luther King Charter School.Goldstein remains unable to facilitate their arrival to New Orleans by the end of October. She will bring two boxes with her to the Lower Ninth Ward when she flies to New Orleans on Friday. But the remaining 48 boxes, which must be delivered directly to Martin Luther King Charter School, still require transportation.Goldstein said she would appreciate contributions from local residents.”This is a community effort,” she said.Anyone who is aware of or owns a freight company, knows of someone traveling to New Orleans in the near future or would be able to make a donation, call Sandy Goldstein at 650-968-2751 or e-mail