Teen Collects, Donates Thousands of Kids Books

Jake Papa dropped off a truck load of children's books to those less fortunate.

How many books was Long Valley’s Jake Papa able to gather and donate to less fortunate children in New Jersey?

He needed a pick-up truck to transport them. That’s how many.

Papa, a junior at West Morris Central, carried the torch he and his sister lit two years ago in asking for children’s books donations from the community. The Bridge of Books Foundation; an organization whose mission is to provide an ongoing source of books to underprivileged and at-risk children throughout the state.

This year, however, Papa had to fly solo, as Katie was away for her first year at college.

In 2011, the duo collected 2,190 books. Despite the team being cut in half, .

He set up drop-off locations at Old Farmers Road School, West Morris Central High School and at the Long Valley Middle School.

So, how many books did Papa gather, warranting the need for a larger vehicle?

How about 4,143, completely obliterating his goal. Some 1,400 books were collected at the Middle School through Janet Dickinson’s efforts, which Papa said was instrumental in the project.

“[Bridge of Books Foundation employee] Abby Daly was very impressed with the total,” Papa said after escorting the reads down to Red Bank recently.

In three years, the collecting effort has donated more than 8,000 books to less fortunate children.

For Papa, hopefully this is just the preface to many chapters of charitable success. 

Eileen Stokes November 21, 2012 at 07:58 PM
Awesome job, Jake! We should all be so selfless and thoughtful towards others. Your sister must be proud.


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