AIT-Omaha Helps Deliver a Bonanza of Books

On March 21 and 22, AIT-Omaha played a key role in Books by the Busload, an event that brings thousands of books around the Omaha area on buses and gives them away in an effort to promote literacy and education. This year, the program gave away between 16,000 and 20,000 books and puzzle books to the local community.

This is the fourth year that the Omaha office has partnered with Metropolitan Community College, Metro Area Transit and Cargo Zone for this event. Lutheran Family Services and AmeriCorps Nebraska also offered their help by providing volunteers who sorted the books and loaded them on the buses.

AIT and Cargo Zone supply the books along with a silent partner. AIT also provides a facility for storage and sorting as well as all the local trucking and logistics support to pull off this major project. During the first weekend of March, the Omaha team gathered with about 30 volunteers from Metropolitan Community College, Lutheran Family Services and AmeriCorps for a book sorting event. In three hours they sorted through nearly 20,000 brand new books, organized them and ensured the age-appropriateness of the materials.

During the day of the event, volunteers gathered at the Metro Area Transit bus barn in downtown Omaha where their entire bus fleet is parked. Books by the Busload took over three buses during the weekend which they staged in strategic locations across the Omaha area. The public was invited to browse the books in a library-like setting on the Metro buses and take home titles for free. Fiction and nonfiction books were available for all ages and reading levels.

Afterwards, AIT-Omaha's Terry McMullen proudly said, "We will have given away more than 70,000 books in the past four years!"

Books by the Busload is part of AIT Cares - an initiative celebrating co-worker efforts to give back to the communities where we live and work.

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