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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Children & Youth Services, Education, International, International Development, International, Foreign Affairs & National Security

Mission: Books For Africa was founded in 1988 by Tom Warth, a Minnesota publisher whose dream was to ship donated books to the children of Africa. Warth's visit to a Ugandan library, where books were almost non-existent, inspired him to create a system for collecting discarded books from American schools, libraries and publishers to send to Africa. Books For Africa remains the largest shipper of donated text and library books to the African continent, shipping over 28 million books to 49 different countries since 1988. Over the past 12 months BFA has shipped 2.2 million books valued at $28.3 million to 22 African countries, with an additional 616 computers and 15 brand new law libraries.

Results: 2013 marks BFA's 25 Anniversary! We are celebrating the 28 million books shipped to 49 African countries thus far, and re-committing our efforts to send even more quality books in the years to come.

Target demographics: African schools and libraries that do not have sufficient books to support learning and recreational reading.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Each container shipped supplies enough books for ten school libraries. BFA ships about 2 containers every week!

Geographic areas served: all of Africa

Programs: Books for africa sent 208 shipments of approximately 2,400,000 books with an estimated value of $33,100,000 to 20 african countires. Books for africa receives funds for the shipment of books to africa, and this is the organization's only program. Additionally, books for africa allows donors to target donations to specific countries and provides feedback to donor when books have been shipped to their countries. 99% of total expenses are spent on program related expenses.

Community Stories

5 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was introduced to Books For Africa by Anne Hussian who was working with Books For Africa on a project. She had listened to my speech about my work rehabilitating victims of human trafficking at the University of Minnesota during my Hubert Humphrey Fellowship. She generously reached out to support my cause and introduced me to the amazingly friendly staff of Books for Africa. What struck me most was the Passion and dedicated efforts of the staff and Board members towards their work-Ending the Book Famine in Africa! There is no bureaucracy in making requests for books and when I expressed the need for books for the education/rehabilitation of victims of human trafficking in Uganda, they supported my cause including helping me with organizing a fundraiser for their shipment. For instance, Carole Patrikakos the manager of corporate relations and grants provided a lot of support in coordination and preparation of the fundraiser and Board member Henry Bromelkamp generously offered and matched any donations of $100 and over towards the shipment of a container of 22,000 books until it is fully fundraised! Am equally appreciative that Books For Africa gives me the freedom to choose the books relevant to the needs and educational environment of the recipients. They also facilitate/ help with networking the people they serve to collaborate in various ways towards common goals. Books For Africa is a true friend of Africa!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am an Ethiopian immigrant who live and work in minneapolis, Minnesota. I always have a dream to help the people of Ethiopia whom I left behind. Now, with the help of Book Africa that dream is close to become a reality. Book for Africa accepted my project for Ethiopia which is opening a family library and parente ducation program and is helping in fund raising. They also promised a container of books, which is around twenty two thousend books. I am always greatful for their work and help. And I am confident that with the help of their supporter my project will be come a reality very soon.

Review from CharityNavigator

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am Director of Development and International Partnerships for Fair Children Youth Foundation in Rwanda. We now have three schools and more than 1,000 pupils in FCYF: Wisdom Nursery and Primary Schools and a Deaf Children's School serve our beloved children in Musanze District. Our region was devastated for over a decade by civil war and genocide, and one of our early tasks when peace was restored was to build and open schools for some of the thousands of children who had been unable to receive ta basic education. We were so excited when a former international volunteer at our foundation who now works for Books for Africa asked if we would be interested to receive books and create a library for our schools. BFA allowed us to select what type and level of books our children needed. They kept us informed at every step of the delivery process, and even arranged for us to welcome in Musanze the wonderful person who sponsored the shipment to us. The books have now arrived and are all in very good condition. We will take care to ensure that they are kept carefully and will serve our children for many years to come. Our pupils are so eager to learn and this wonderful donation is surely a life changer for the children of Musanze. We now hear that more books will be coming our way next year. BFA is an amazing organization and we are grateful to them and all who come together through their excellent coordination and make it possible for our children to receive the learning they need and deserve. We hope in time to come to set up reading classes and make our library more widely available to the many youth and young adults who have missed out on primary education and yet are eager to become literate. Thank you BFA!

kelseyg

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm a Peace Corps Volunteer coordinating several library projects in rural communities throughout South Africa - when looking for sources of donated books, word of mouth among other volunteers recommended BFA. Working with Books for Africa to distribute a shipment of 22,000 books to rural communities has been wonderful. I have been impressed by their professionalism and helpfulness throughout the process. They make the often-complex process of receiving books very clear for communities and folks in the field. The books donated to BFA are stocking libraries in impoverished areas where kids are really thirsty for reading materials - they're making an incredible difference.

Review from CharityNavigator

Client Served

Rating: 5

I received books from Books for Africa while serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in South Africa. The BFA staff was really great and helped us to organize the shipment of the books. We were then able to open thirty libraries throughout South Africa in schools that were invested in the project. BFA books are now read by 30,000 students in our schools each year. Without BFA, this project would not have been possible. Thank you for all of your great work!

Review from CharityNavigator