Chris Janssen was trying to figure out an easy way to raise money for the Terry-Fox/Shinerama campaign at the University of Western Ontario. He came up with a model of collecting used textbooks from previous students, in order to sell them back to other students looking for affordable alternatives to existing purchasing platforms. After this small trial run, about $500 was raised for the two causes. Janssen then began to brainstorm ways to increase the impact an initiative like this one could create. Textbooks for Change was born.