Sunday, May 30, 2010

Summer 2010 (and the future: Daniel Torkornoo Memorial Library)

This summer of 2010 I will be returning to oversee the project. There are currently 22 boxes for the library. I will be helping to organize the books, but first I need to buy some bookshelves. 3 will not suffice.

My goal was to collect more books, especially elementary level as the studens showed such passion during the dedication. I had started for the Junior high but the little ones seem very interested as well.

In comes Sutherland Middle School, my new teaching location in Charlottesville. When I shared the news with the students and teachers, they generously donated several of their old books. In one week, I gathered 25 boxes from students, teachers, and parents. One class was shooting for 1000 books, which they reached in their second week. As of now (June 1), I have over 40 boxes of books over a duration of 3 weeks (just from the Sutherland community). With 2 more weeks left of school, I can only imagine the number of books that will be flooding in. My guest room is being inundated with children books.

My challenge is now finding a way to send them. Of course all these won't fit in the small metail trailer and the 3 bookshelves so I called the principals (with whom I talk quite frequently). We've decided to move the location to a bigger structure (albeit not built yet). I've also decided to share some with the public library which servees more students. As of now, the school has more books than the public library itself and perhaps even the private schools.

How about the naming of the library. I've refused to put my name on it, but agreed to put another's. I've decided to name it after my grandfather who fought in WWII and who introduced me to the school in the first place.

The library will now be called "Daniel Torkornoo Memorial Library." This next part I usually keep to myself. After deducting the two carwashes and donations, the library cost me a little over $1500 to establish.

Throughout the summer I will be updating the blog with new stories and new pictures.


  1. After reading this piece about your efforts in establishing the library, I can't help it, but to say Thank God and thank you for such a vision and passion for the school. I know very well how little a time you spent in the school, yet what you are doing in there is a true memorial. I pray that all move on as you have planned to make this project a reality which will go a long way in helping improve the standard of english language and of course comprehension of issues by these children.
    I am particularly proud of you with respect to all your efforts on this project and I am equally proud to have been in class with you though you kept fraustrating me in becoming the first in the class.

    God bless and replenish all that you may have sacrificed to make this library a reality for the school.

    Theodore Adjei.
    Accra, Ghana.

  2. Thanks for your kind words Theodore. I'm glad that you recognized this as an effort for the school and not for myself. I did spend just a short moment there but I grew a lot. Ghateco primary already had a library but I can donate some books to them as well. I hope you and I can visit the school to remember the good old days when you visit Koforidua.