Mr. Biblioburro

Luis Soriano is a teacher. The biblioburro was his idea. He does it on weekends.

Luis is a volunteer and does not get paid.

Luis lives in Colombia, a country in South America. Colombia has many farms, many of which are owned by poor farmers.

Parts of Colombia are dangerous, particularly in the countryside. Riding around the countryside is dangerous, but Luis does it anyway. He knows the children need the books he carries.


The children write stories and bring them to Luis. Luis asks them to read the stories out loud to the group. The stories they write usually tell about things that happen to them in their daily lives. Many of the stories are sad. In one, a little sister was killed in an explosion. In another, a girl and her family ran and hid when shooting gunmen attacked their home.

After each story, Luis says, “We must remember this story. It is sad, but we will move on. Where will we put this story?”

“Behind us,” say the children.

“Behind us,” says Luis. “We will put it behind us and leave it there.”

After story time, the children become much more cheerful. It is time to exchange books. The children return their old books and get to take out new ones. They go home with a book and a big smile. The books mean so much to them.

Not long ago, a man made a movie about Luis. Many people saw the movie and wanted to help Luis afterward. People all over the world sent him books. Luis used to keep the library books in his house. But with so many books coming in, Luis had to find a new place to house his ever-growing library. Luis is very grateful for these donations, which mean so much to the children who depend on him and his biblioburro.