In honor of Thanksgiving we’re highlighting a few ways for you to make a difference with your stacks of old books. Sure, you could sell your used titles back for a measly few bucks, but wouldn’t it feel better knowing you’ve made a difference? Thought so. Read on.
Better World Books – We don’t want to play favorites, but Better World Books is an excellent way to go if you don’t live near a drop site and you want your books to make a big difference. All you need to do is box up your old books and print a shipping label from their site. No need to fret, BWB will pay the shipping and either donate your book or resell it in order to raise money for charity. But it doesn’t stop there. Their site is full of some really great initiatives (for every book you buy from them, they donate one!), so take some time to check out all the great stuff they have to offer.
Libraries Without Borders – This site is a great way to benefit libraries and library projects around the world. They stock libraries, train librarians, provide support to create and build new libraries, and they work to computerize library systems. If you have a soft spot for the little library card in your wallet, consider donating books to their cause.
Books for Soldiers and Operation Paperback – Both of these organizations are a great way to get books to our troops. Though they’re run differently, you register on both sites in order to get information on requested books from soldiers. Then you ship directly to the organization or soldier. And no need to worry about shipping costs. Both offer really affordable ways to send your books overseas.
Books for Africa – According to their site, Books for Africa is, “A simple name for an organization with a simple mission. We collect, sort, ship, and distribute books to children in Africa. Our goal: to end the book famine in Africa.” This organization has good cause written all over it. Though the donations do have restrictions, it’s an excellent way to get involved with promoting literacy and learning.
Book Up – Run by the National Book Award, this organization focuses on getting kids in middle school (a time when research shows kids are most likely to stop reading) into books. “The program introduces activities that emphasize reading as both fun and interactive, all designed to improve students’ social/emotional skills along with their reading skills, and build the confidence necessary to become engaged citizens as adults.” Great cause.