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Yoga breathes money into book drive

Published:Tuesday | March 9, 2010 | 12:00 AM
André Hylton of André's Auto Supplies, one of the sponsors of the fund-raising yoga event, tries his hand at one of the yoga poses.
Sharon McConnell-Feanny (right) of Shakti Mind Body Fitness leads the group at the Breathe For Books event.

THE ROTARY Race for Literacy Book Drive took a little 'breather' recently at a Breathe-for-Books fund-raising yoga event held on the lawns of Devon House in St Andrew.

The event was held in association with

Shakti Mind Body Fitness, with Sharon McConnell leading the outdoor session. The event was put on to

raise money for the Rotary Race to Literacy Book Drive, which is aiming to collect a record number of books during the Rotary's District Conference, May 1-7.

While the project focuses on the donation of books, it is also aiming to raise a substantial amount of money to buy speciality children's books from Scholastic, a publisher based in the United States, to fulfil a need of books aimed at children with learning disabilities such as autism. Funds will also be used to buy children's books from local publishing partners.

With the purchase deadline of March 15 looming, Deika Morrison, chairperson of the Rotary Race for Literacy project, organised the event, offering people a novel way to enjoy a Saturday morning, as well as raise some much-needed funds.

Perfect timing

"All money donated buys books only," said Morrison. "Because of the support,

we can now buy approximately 128 early-childhood education books, including those for special needs. These books will go to the Jamaica Library Service with its islandwide reach, fulfilling a very wide need. We only have until March 15 to place this order, so this contribution comes at the perfect time," added Morrison.

Inspired by a record-breaking book drive organised by Rotary International (RI) at their International Convention, last year in Los Angeles, California, the Jamaica drive draws together all Rotary clubs on the island, and hopes to challenge the 242,624 books that were collected by RI. While the drive will not take place until May 1, those interested in donating books are asked to drop books at any of the project's drop-off points between now and May 1. (visit
for a comprehensive list of drop-off points.)