Welcome to Toby's journey!
Hi, my name is Toby, and I am now nine years old. When I was five, I decided that I wanted to find out lots about the world, so I started writing letters to somebody in every country in the world. I started the project because I wanted to find out more about the world, help people understand each other better, and make the world a better place - and I still do! It's really tricky to find people in every country, but lots of people have been helping me - thank you!
We look up all countries, and I think of questions I would like to ask. I'm interested in fossils, archaeology, explorers, history, stars and planets, science, wild creatures, film making, writing, reading, books, dancing, and how people help other people and protect the environment in lots of places all over the world! I also want to know how people live, and what food they eat, and what school is like!
I write all letters by hand. My Mum is looking after this website for me. You can read all the letters I have written, and all the replies I am getting. I am also raising money for ShelterBox, because they help people all over the world who need help. Thank you for reading about my project!
Current count of letters written: 1150
Current count of replies I got: 496
The next letters will go to: Yuan-Chun (Taiwan), Xander, Kloey, Oliver and Theodore (Kansas/US), Ayan (India)
Second (third...fourth...fifth...ninth) attempts:
We do have countries Toby has written to, but not heard back from - if you can help us with a contact there, we would really, really like to know, so Toby can try again (for some of these countries, letters may be on the way back...but we won't know until they get here, so they'll stay on the list until they can get ticked off - an asterisk means that the latest letter was sent out in 2017):
Angola, Armenia, *Burma (Myanmar), Burundi, Central African Republic, Cuba, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Kiribati, *Laos, *Lesotho, Mauritania, *Pakistan, *Panama, *Paraguay, *Saint Vincent and Grenadines, Somalia, Sudan, *Syria, Tajikistan, Tonga, Tunisia, Tuvalu.
DOUBLE UPS AND SPECIAL REQUESTS: Toby put together a special wish list below - they are either countries he would love to travel to, professions he is interested in, or places where we have looked for a contact unsuccessfully for a long time. If your country/job is not on this list, we'd still love to hear from you!
COUNTRIES/PLACES: Antarctica, Vatican City, China, Galapagos, any country with fewer than a million people in it, getting a letter into space!!
JOBS: Any archaeologist, palaeontologist, explorer, disaster specialist, wildlife conservationist, marine biologist, wildlife photographer/cameraman/film maker/presenter, author/writer, astronaut, Lego designer, cellist or male ballet dancer in any country
If you would like to volunteer your address, or just say "hello", you can do that here. We try our best to get back to as many people as possible.
A word from Sabine (Mum):
Thank you for taking an interest in Toby's project - the amount of help we have received from so many people, ranging from friends to complete strangers, has been absolutely overwhelming, and is something we never dreamt possible when Toby initially had the idea! There is an "About" page which gives a bit more background to the project. The full list of countries that are part of Toby's challenge is on each respective continent page (although we are adding additional countries as they occur).
Toby's Dad, Toby and I decided that it would be lovely to stay in touch with Toby's penpals beyond the one-off exchange. Also, so many people have taken an interest in the project via Facebook, that we thought it might be useful to have a Facebook page for the project. On it, we'll share short updates, like bits of info we've learnt about countries, letters written, sent and received, activities, etc. If you want to share in the daily journey, please pop by: https://www.facebook.com/writingtotheworld