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United Way of RI's Annual Children's Book Drive: May 1 - 31, 2021

Updated: May 1, 2021

According to the 2020 Rhode Island Kids Counts Factbook, 48% of third-graders met

grade level expectations in 2019. This was before many students were learning from home, and had limited access to reading instruction and books. Books Are Works hard to provide local children with access to high quality reading material, and we've worked harder than ever during the pandemic to ensure that children can continue to build their personal libraries.

BAW created the Book Bag Project to ensure that children and families that need books the

most have access. These are distributed in schools, at meal sites and with community partners. We need more books than ever before to meet the demand for these books bags, while continuing to keep children and families safe.

We are once again partnering with the United Way of RI for our biggest book drive of the year. The UWRI Children’s book drive is going into its 9th year. We’ve distributed over 216,000 books into the hands of children across the state for almost a decade.

As part of this drive, we typically recruit companies across the state to join us. We also recruit community organizations and stores, families, individuals, and even students needing community service to run their own mini-book drives to bring in books.

This year we have modified our drive due to COVID. Workplaces that are in the office can hold a traditional book drive; remote workplaces can offer contactless book drive drop off events; and the general public can use community drop off locations, including Cardi’s Furniture and Centreville Bank branches. Additionally, anyone can purchase directly from our Amazon Wish List:

All books from the drive and other donors come to the BAW office space to quarantine. Books are then sorted for quality and historical accuracy to ensure all children and families are represented appropriately in the books we give. They are then sorted by age level and bagged or boxed. 

For any questions regarding the drive, email:

Drop off locations are:

Cardi’s Furniture & Mattresses, 1681 Quaker Lane (Route 2), West Warwick, RI

Cardi’s Furniture & Mattresses, 999 Newport Avenue (Route 1A), South Attleboro, MA

Cardi’s Furniture & Mattresses, 1 Furniture Way, Swansea, MA

Centreville Bank, 1218 Main Street, West Warwick, RI

East Providence Library, 41 Grove Avenue, East Providence, RI

McQuade’s Marketplace, 106 Main Street, Westerly, RI

Savoy Bookshop & Café, 10 Canal Street, Westerly, RI

Books Are Wings, 1005 Main Street, Pawtucket, RI

By appointment only: call Books Are Wings staff, 401-475-4882

United Way of Rhode Island, 50 Valley Street, Providence

By appointment only. Email or call 401-444-0714

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