A Path To Hope
Where We Started
When e.E. Charlton-Trujillo saw the image of 10-year-old Xavier Lopez, the first child victim released, Trujillo sank into their office chair and cried. Another mass school shooting – this the worst statistically since Sandy Hook Elementary.
A conversation with fellow author and literacy activist G. Neri went from a place of hopelessness to hope when he said, “Anyone can donate money, sign petitions. But only we can do what we do. You need to focus on the kids.”
Trujillo began 600 Books of Hope as a grassroots effort to collect and later donate 600 new children’s books to Robb Elementary School students. To give them a physical, tangible place to escape, grieve, or feel whole – even if for a moment’s reprieve.
The first book arrived on May 31. Since then, thousands of books from authors, illustrators, teachers, librarians, publishers, booksellers, and people from all walks of life have filled Trujillo’s house and garage, including donations from across America, Australia, Canada, France, and the U.K.
We later partnered with The Twig Book Shop in San Antonio, Texas where people donated books and gift cards to purchase books. We have closed our request for donations and hope to have all of the books processed by end of August to give to the kids in early October.
First and foremost, we want to complete the logging and sorting of the book donations and gift them to the children of Uvalde. Beyond that, when the time is appropriate, the #600BooksOfHope Vision Team has created a school-wide, artist focused event that we hope to provide the kids of Uvalde. Partnering with children’s authors, illustrators, and publishers, along with Edmentum and nonprofits such as Reading Is Fundamental, this would be an event to honor those who were lost and lift those who remain through story.