Passports with Purpose Partners with Room to Read to Build Two Libraries in Zambia

Fourth Annual Travel Bloggers’ Community Fundraiser Announces 2011 Beneficiary and Platinum Sponsor

Seattle, WA, August 07, 2011 --( Passports with Purpose (PwP), the travel bloggers' community fundraiser, is proud to announce its 2011 beneficiary, Room to Read. Created by four Seattle-based travel bloggers, Passports with Purpose’s goal this year is to raise $80,000 to build two libraries in southern and eastern Zambia through Room to Read’s Reading Room program. Room to Read seeks to transform the lives of millions of children in developing countries by focusing on literacy and gender equality in education. Passports with Purpose will begin on November 30 and end on December 16, 2011.

“Room to Read was founded because of my experience being introduced to a ‘library without books’ in a rural village in Nepal. The headmaster's simple request to someday come back with books sparked my desire to help him to bring the lifelong gift of education to his students. We have now opened over 11,000 libraries, but need tens of thousands more. So we are very excited to be a part of Passports with Purpose because it allows travelers to share their passion, while also providing children with quality education to shape their futures,” said John Wood, Room to Read founder and board co-chair. “This innovative fundraiser combines travel, social media and philanthropy and will benefit communities in Zambia for years to come.”

Jumpstarting the fundraising effort as the Passports with Purpose 2011 Platinum Sponsor is Round the World with Us and Silver Sponsor Travellerspoint. Round the World with Us co-founder Teresa Keller turned her dreams into a non-profit with the goals of raising awareness of global issues and empowering people to combine even small actions to make a big difference in the lives of others. Round the World with Us co-founders Keller and Doug Tilden commented, “We are thrilled to be working with Passports with Purpose and Room to Read. The combination of these organizations with Round the World with Us will allow ordinary folks to bring the world of literacy and all its benefits to thousands of children and adults in Zambia.”

The groundwork building up to establishing these two libraries has begun and full establishment will occur mid-2012. Funds raised for the libraries will cover the costs of the constructing building, all the library resources such as books and educational materials, teacher training and three years of support. After that, the library is handed over to the government school system.

“We've been writers and readers of stories for almost as long as we can remember. Supporting an early childhood literacy project goes right to the heart of what we love - reading and writing,” said Pam Mandel co-founder of Passports with Purpose.

“Literacy can help the future generations lift themselves out of poverty. We are impressed with Room to Read, an organization that has an established track record in establishing libraries and driving other projects that contribute to childhood literacy in developing countries. Room to Read combines our love for the written word with our desire to help make the world a better place,” said Debbie Dubrow, co-founder of Passports with Purpose. “We believe in the power of travel to make change and ask everyone to join us.”

Everyone is welcome to contribute, from veteran travel bloggers or those looking to join the travel community. Passports with Purpose blogger participants procure a prize, host the fundraising badge and promote the effort through their social networks. Passports with Purpose is also opening participation to organizations that wish to donate prizes or become sponsors. Beginning November 30, 2011, the public can participate by making donations in $10 increments and enter to receive a prize (or prizes) of their choice on the Passports with Purpose website.

In 2008, Debbie Dubrow, Michelle Duffy, Pam Mandel, and Beth Whitman, the bloggers behind Delicious Baby, WanderMom, Nerd’s Eye View and Wanderlust and Lipstick, respectively, began a travel-inspired initiative to raise money online. Passports with Purpose initiatives benefited Heifer International, American Assistance for Cambodia and Friends of LAFTI. For more information about Passports with Purpose visit or on Facebook at For more information about Room to Read visit

Media contact: Meg Paynor,, 206.913.3848

Sponsorships, prize donations, blogger sign-up:

Passports with Purpose
Meg Paynor