The Footpath Library
Founded by Sarah Garnett in 2003, The Footpath Library grew out of sorrow, a simple observation and the desire to make a difference.
When a family friend, Benjamin Andrew died unexpectedly, Sarah responded to her grief by volunteering with one of the food trucks in Sydney’s CBD.
“One evening, I noticed a man sitting under a streetlight, reading a novel, while waiting for the food van. I started to bring him a few books every week and it was from that humble beginning the original The Benjamin Andrew Footpath Library grew.”
Now The Footpath Library runs regular mobile library outreach services in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth and gives away more than 8,000 books a year to people experiencing homelessness, through the generous support of Australian publishers and book reviewers who donate new books and avid readers in the general public who donate their preloved favourites..
Who was Benjamin Andrew?
Ben was the son of one of Sarah’s closest friends, and they in turn became great friends. Sarah originally named The Footpath Library after him because books and writing were his passion, and Sarah wanted to commemorate a young man with a great and promising future whose life ended too early.