Looking for where to donate used books? Here are some ideas to help you find a new home for your books where you know they will get used and appreciated. It can be tough wanting to get rid of books. However, knowing they will end up in the hands of people who need them makes finding a home for your used books a more pleasant decluttering experience!
First, sort through and declutter books in your home. It can be an emotional task, but once you get through them all, you will have more space and less guilt for books no longer read. Plus, you will get great joy from knowing books are no longer collecting dust on your shelves or in boxes and are getting used by people who truly need them.
If you need an extra boost to get started with decluttering, please join our FREE 5-Day Declutter My Home Challenge to get small, actionable steps that get you well on your way to a more clutter-free home!
Related post: How to Sort Through and Declutter Books
Here are 15 places you can donate used books:
1 – Keep only a small library in your home.
As I said, we only have one bookshelf for most of our book collection. We keep it in the guest bedroom. Now, if we have out of town guests looking for a new book to read while on vacation, there is a small collection. However, there are no longer shelves and shelves of books.
2 – Give a book (or books) a friend.
You know your friends, and you know their interests. If you have a book you enjoyed, pass it on! Save them a trip to the library, and add a note as to why you enjoyed the book. It also makes for great conversation once they are done reading it. Then, they too can pass on the book without any guilt for money spent on it.
3 – Set up a Little Free Library.
A person in our town set up a cute Little Free Library at the end of their driveway. I LOVE this concept. We were walking by one day, and there was the cutest little lending library. My girls were thrilled to get a “new” book, and we were able to trade it out with a book they no longer read. It is the perfect one-in-one-out solution!
4 – Donate books to your local library.
Ever since we stopped buying books and started to borrow them, I have grown a whole new love for our local library. In the digital age, libraries are a wealth of resources for their communities.
I live in a tiny town, yet I can still borrow just about any book I want. I may have to wait for it to get transferred to my local branch, but nonetheless, how cool!
Libraries love good, quality book donations. Some libraries will also sell used books in annual or ongoing fundraisers. Give them a call and check it out!
5 – Donate books to local nursing homes or hospitals.
Call up your local nursing homes or hospitals and ask if they take used books. I was so delighted one day when were visiting the local children’s hospital and a man came around with a book cart. I thought he was handing out books for us to read while waiting. That wasn’t the case. He was giving the books away! My kids were so excited, and it made being at the hospital a little less scary.
6 – Donate books to Better World Books
For every book sold through Better World Books, they donate books to those in need. They also help fund libraries and literacy around the world. They take books for all ages.
7 – Gift used books.
Looking for a budget-friendly gift idea? Take a used book, put it in a pretty bag or wrap it with pretty paper and a bow, and you have yourself a pretty thrifty gift! Some books cost a lot of money, and most people don’t care if a book is brand new!
Don’t be afraid to give away something used as a quality and thoughtful gift.
8 – Donate used books to a local charity.
You can always drop off used books to a local Goodwill or like charity. It is easy and welcomed.
9 – Donate books to your church.
Many churches have libraries for their members, and they may take gently used boos. Reach out and see if they have a program to take donated books.
10 – Donate books to a homeless shelter.
Most cities have a homeless shelter. See if they will accept used books. You will know you are doing something to help your local community!
11 – Donate to Operation Paperback
Operation Paperback helps facilitate sending your paperback books to soldiers overseas. The program also sends books to wounded warrior programs and veterans hospitals in the US.
Where to donate children’s books:
12 – Donate kid books to daycares.
There are a lot of daycares that need financial support in any way they can get it, including supplies like books. Many daycares would be thrilled if you donated quality, used books to them. Even if your kids are out of daycare, call up some of your local ones and see if they would be interested.
13 – Donate children’s books to your local school.
Call your school and see if they want any used children’s books. They may have a program to accept gently used books. You are then giving the opportunity to many children to experience books they may not be able to experience at home.
14 – Donate to Kids Need to Read
Kids Need to Read provides used books to underfunded communities so children can get exposed to books at a young age.
15 – Donate to Books For Africa
Books For Africa ships used books to people in Africa so they can “end the book famine in Africa”.
If you decide to donate your used books, you will be making the world a better place. Even if all you do is drive down to your local Goodwill, money will be raised, minds will be enriched, and you will have more space in your home! It is a win-win for everyone involved. Help spread literacy in your own neighborhood or on the other side of the world by donating your used books.