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Organize A Book Drive

Hosting a book drive for Bernie’s Book Bank is fun, meaningful and easy to do!

Why collect and sort books for Bernie’s Book Bank?

  1. You will have an impact on Chicagoland children
  2. It is a great opportunity for team building and leadership
  3. You and/or your group have the option to volunteer following the book drive to see the full impact of your donation

Please review the details below before committing to a book drive: 

    • Thank you for agreeing to collect AND sort children’s books for Bernie’s Book Bank! Using our guidelines, consider how you will not only collect books, but sort them before we pick them up. Reviewing all books collected and recycling any books that do not meet our standards saves our volunteers time and ensures children receive their books sooner!
    • First, pick your dates: We recommend a length of two weeks, including two weekends, for your book drive. For a large community effort, a longer drive might be more successful.  Please factor in the time it will take to sort the books before we pick them up.
    • Choose a group and location: You can host a book drive as an individual or with your corporation, school, civic or religious group, sports team, etc. Please make sure to get permission to place collection bins in your desired location prior to the start of your drive.
    • Set a goal: Make it meaningful and reach for the highest number you can!  A good rule of thumb for a K-8 school is 2-3 book/student.  For other drives, you can estimate 1-2 books per donor.
    • Supplies: Please use copy paper-sized boxes with lids to collect the books and ready them for pick-up.  This will be safest for you, our drivers and our volunteers who handle the books.  If you collect more than 500 books, we can pick them up or you can bring them to our Processing Center in Lake Bluff.  For fewer than 500 books we ask you to drop them off at one of our Book Drop Partners. If you believe you will collect 1,500 books or more, we may be able to provide you with collection bins.
    • Marketing: You can download and edit a customizable flyer to help promote your upcoming book drive.
    • Virtual Book Drive: Have remote colleagues or family out of town? In addition to (or instead of) a hands-on book drive you can have a virtual book drive.  We can create a custom page (example) with a secure link for making donations. Donors can choose from a variety of books to donate safely at home.
    • Volunteering – if your group can volunteer at our Lake Bluff processing center, we highly recommend it and invite you to join us BEFORE your book drive so everyone can see what we do and be energized about the book drive. We love having volunteers any time though so please join us.

Ready to collect AND sort children’s books? Fill out our custom form and we will get back to you shortly. 

Double Your Impact

Celebrate a successful book drive by volunteering with us! We offer weekly volunteer sessions, Monday through Saturday. 

Learn more


Please contact Carol Collier with any questions.

Contact Carol

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New Trier Township collects books for Bernie’s Book Bank.