Knygų Kalėdos / Chrismas of Books

National initiative aimed at promoting reading and sharing books

What to do when 300 kids write a letter to the head of state asking for new books for public libraries?

On the one hand situation was difficult, since public libraries were lacking funding due to state budget cuts after 2008 financial crisis.

On the other hand Lithuanian people were always book lovers. So, a solution was quite simple. President Dalia Grybauskaitė has initiated the nationwide movement encouraging people to read, to donate new books for school and public libraries and to share with the less privileged.

After a launch of campaign in 2011, “Christmas of Books” helped to collect more than 172 000 new books for libraries. Thousands of reading events took place all around Lithuania. Special workshops for kids, a travelling “Christmas of Books” bus helped to reach the furthest points.

Those results were achieved by starting co-operation with libraries, book stores, publishing houses, writers and artists and embassies and encouraging people of Lithuania to share books.

“Christmas of Books” continues to be one of the highlights of Christmas season in Lithuania.