Saturday, January 7, 2012

Cairo’s “Taxis Of Knowledge”

Knowledge TaxiThis article was originally published on TKN in Nov. 2011.
Cairo, the capital city of Egypt, has a lot of traffic. Commuters often find themselves stuck in a traffic jam, unable to move.
One book store came up with an ingenious program to help the people who take taxis in the city. They call it, “The Taxi of Knowledge.”
Alef Books gives taxi drivers five free books, which they can place in the back seat of their cab.
Passengers can read a good book while they’re stuck in traffic.
The taxi driver gets to choose which books he wants. He can also trade them in whenever he wants, for different books.
Alef started the program to get more books into the hands of the general public, a spokesman for the bookstore said.
More than 10,000 books have been donated for the project, by authors and other donors.
Not only are passengers enjoying the books, but the taxi drivers are, too. Alef offers a cash reward for taxi drivers who are particularly knowledgeable about the books in their cab. That is proving to be a great incentive for taxi drivers to take the books home and read them with their families.
The Taxi of Knowledge project is a success. In June, 200 cabs were involved in the program. Alef hope to have books in 10 times that many taxis by the end of the year.


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