Donating books is a direct and cost-effective way to help schools, libraries, and literacy organizations, but it is worthwhile to do some research beforehand. This guide provides practical information about book donating and includes a fairly substantial list of domestic and international organizations with which you might partner.
The local public library seems like a logical place to donate used or unwanted books, and while many libraries will appreciate a donation for the benefit of a used book sale or book drive, most are very selective about how many and what kinds of books they will accept into their collections. It requires time (and therefore money) to process books into a library’s cataloging system, and each library has to balance its unique collection development needs with limited physical space. If you are interested in making an impact beyond the local level, there are reputable domestic and international organizations (almost exclusively non-profit) that welcome book donations, or you can apply monetary donations toward the purchase of books.
Resources listed under the “Introduction to Donating” tab provide an overview, and those listed under the “Books about Donating” tab explain in detail the sometimes complex socio-economic, cultural, and logistical aspects of international book donation. The next two tabs consist of a webliography of donating organizations. The videos listed under the “Media” tabs add faces and places to approximately half of the programs included in the webliography. Finally, the organizations listed under the “Literacy & Education” tab round-out the broader context of book donation.