Robbi & Matthew's Busload of Books Tour

READY TO JOIN US ON THE BUS? Click here to contribute any amount through GoFundMe! Or CLICK HERE TO MAKE A TAX DEDUCTIBLE DONATION  of $100 or above via our partner nonprofit.

TO HEAR MORE ABOUT OUR PROJECT, READ ON:
Children’s book author/ illustrator, husband/wife duo Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr (and their four kids and one dog) are spending the 2022-2023 school year living and traveling the country in a tiny home school bus. They'll be:
  • Giving presentations in Title I (high need) elementary schools in all 50 states
  • Distributing 150,000 free books to students and teachers from low-income communities.
  • Facilitating the first-ever, large-scale study of how author/illustrator visits impact elementary student attitudes about literacy and creativity.


THE NEED IS REAL.
Books have been shown to have a positive impact on reading, academic performance, and language development. And yet books are often scarce for the kids who need them most.

THIS APPROACH WORKS.
We've done a bunch school-wide book giveaways in our local Title I schools (serving children from low-income families), and the results have always been the same: Kids dive into reading. They start telling their own stories. They gain a sense of heightened possibility. The local impact has been amazing. Now we're going to do it at the national level.


WE'LL BE BRINGING YOU WITH US. 
When not visiting schools, we’ll chronicle our country’s incredible cultural and geographic diversity—visiting historical landmarks, unsung treasures, and off-the-beaten path communities—while sharing our adventures through daily photos, videos, sketches, and live streams.
We hope you’ll join us for the journey!
PLEASE HELP US PUT BOOKS ON THE BUS!
Thanks to a handful of extremely generous donors, we’ve raised the funds to cover trip expenses and renovate the bus. But now we need to fill it with books.

Every $5 you donate puts a hardcover book in the hands of a deserving student or teacher—spurring reading, increasing engagement, and igniting creativity.
$150 buys books for an entire classroom.
$300-$500 covers an entire grade.
$2,500-$5,000 brings smiles to an entire school!

Click here to contribute any amount through GoFundMe.

Or make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE DONATION OF $100 OR MORE, via our fiscal sponsor Kent Cultural Alliance. Be sure to mention "Busload of Books" in the notes field!

Here's what we know: Books have the power to change lives. 
Everyone should have access to them.


WE'LL BE TRAVELING IN EXCELLENT COMPANY.
We’re partnering with two incredible national nonprofits—and a beloved local arts organization.

FIRST BOOK helped us identify schools where our visit and books will have the greatest impact.

We'll be partnering with the Department of Education at Washington College to conduct a major research project on the impact of author visits on creativity and literacy. 

We're partnering with FIRST BOOK and BUILD-A-BEAR FOUNDATION to distribute a total of 150,000 free books to Title I communites (25K of our own books and 125K more that will be distributed through the First Book Marketplace).

KENT CULTURAL ALLIANCE will accept tax-deductible donations of $100 and above on our behalf. Be make sure to mention "Busload of Books" in the notes field!

WHO WE ARE
Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr are author and illustrator of the critically acclaimed Cookie Chronicles series, The Real McCoys trilogy, and the picture books Sunrise Summer, Babies Ruin Everything, and Everywhere, Wonder. When not advocating for local schools, giving talks on creative entrepreneurship, or commercial salmon fishing in Alaska, they live in the hayloft of an old barn on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Learn

Read our profile in the Washington Post

Visit our website

Learn more about our books.

Follow us on Instagram , Facebook , and YouTube . 


  • GoFundMe Team 
    • $300 
    • 19 d
  • Judith Hinds 
    • $100 
    • 21 d
  • Micaela Presti 
    • $250 
    • 22 d
  • Anonymous 
    • $20 
    • 22 d
  • Megan OLeary 
    • $20 
    • 23 d
See all

Fundraising team (3)

Matthew Swanson 
Organizer
Raised $17,348 from 90 donations
Chestertown, MD
Robbi Behr 
Team member
Raised $8,980 from 67 donations
David Hornik 
Team member
Raised $2,500 from 15 donations