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What We Do

Bellingham Books To Prisoners is a 100% volunteer staffed, non-profit group that sends free books upon request to prisoners throughout the U.S.  We are partnered with Seattle Books To Prisoners (, one of the oldest BTP programs in the country.  Letters from prisoners are sent to Seattle, then forwarded to us – we are responsible for getting donated books, finding volunteers, and raising money for postage and supplies.  Last year, Seattle BTP, along with chapters in Portland, Olympia, and Bellingham answered a combined 14,900 letters.  Bellingham BTP sent out over 7,000 books.

The following short video helps demonstrate the importance of the work we do: (more…)


Big Book Sale on Saturday, 12/12/15 9-3!

Book Bazaar 2015!

Saturday, December 12, 2015, from 9-3, join us for our second annual Holiday Book Sale!  We have TONS of books available! Most books are just $1 each, plus door prizes and raffles. It’s located at our offices at 228 East Champion Street. The entrance is on the basement level, off the alley that faces the WTA bus station. Just look for the colorful balloons.

Stock up on reading material for friends, family and yourself. Many books will make great Christmas and New Years gifts. (Don’t forget Winter birthday presents, too!) – all while helping out a worthy cause.  100% of proceeds go toward postage to send free books to incarcerated people all over the United States.

Fund Drive with Matching Challenge!

March 23, 2015

Are we a “victim” of our own success? Bellingham Books to Prisoners has been so successful at filling, wrapping and mailing packages this Winter that we are quickly running out of money for mailing. Post Office bills for just the last two weeks represent $150 in the debit column. Thus, one more busy packing meeting and we’ll have to place a temporary hold on wrapping packages. There is still plenty for volunteers to do at the office, such as sorting out books and sweeping the floors, but our PRIMARY purpose (“raison d’etre,” as our friends in Quebec would say) is getting book requests out to incarcerated Americans. So, we need your financial support.

Your donations to BTP will make a difference NOW. Even better, between now and Tax Day, April 15, an anonymous supporter has pledged to match your donations, dollar for dollar. Your $25 donation? *poof!* Now it’s a $50 donation! Just like that. You can deliver this support via check, cash, or gold bullion by mail:

Bellingham Books To Prisoners
PO Box 1254,    Bellingham, WA 98227

Or stop by our office space in the basement of 228 E. Champion Street during our packing meetings every Monday night from 6-9.

From all of us Bellingham BTP volunteers: Thank You for keeping us going!

2014 Holiday Book Sale

2014 Holiday Book Sale

We will be having a giant book sale on Saturday, December 13 from 10am to 3pm at our home base at 228 East Champion street.  Entrance is on the basement level, off of the alley that faces the WTA bus station.

Not only will we be selling our usual selection of thousands of books for only $1 each, but we will be opening up our entire collection for sale, on a case-by-case basis – typically cheaper than a used book store.  In all, there will be over 15,000 books for sale, plus raffles and door prizes.

Come on by and stock up on reading material for yourself, and get great Christmas gifts for your friends and family – all while helping out a worthy cause.  100% of proceeds go toward postage to send free books to prisoners throughout the country.


HUGE Book Sale!

We will be having a massive book sale on Saturday, May 25th from 9-3 on the corner of State and Champion Streets.  Books will be $1 each, or 8 for $5!

Please come out and support us and get a great deal on reading material, we have a large selection of books donated over the winter to move out.  100% of proceeds go to postage to send free books to people in prison.

Benefit Concert

Robert Sarazin Blake & The Heligoats. Thursday, November 29th, 9 pm at the Green Frog, 1015 N State St.  $10 suggested donation at the door, 21 and older.

Whatcom Realators’ Give-a-thon

Come join us Thursday, November 29th, from 11 am to 6 pm at the Elks Lodge, 710 Samish Way.  We will have our usual holiday goods for sale along with raffles.  Another good opportunity to do some holiday shopping while helping out worthy non-profit organizations.

5th Annual Multifaith Alternative Holiday Market

We will be participating in the Multifaith Alternative Holiday market again this year.  The date is Saturday, November 17, from 10 am-1 pm at the Assumption Church gymnasium, 2116 Cornwall Avenue.  Please come out and support us and help us raise some badly needed funds.  Hope to see you there!

Garlic Braids Available

Get a 13 bulb, organically grown garlic braid with the donation of $25.  It’s a food, it’s a spice, it’s medicine – grown by BTP volunteers.  While supplies last – email us to order, or for more information.

Book Sale!

This Saturday, July 14, from 8-3 we will be in front of the Farmers Market on Railroad Ave.  We have a large selection of books with many new titles since our last sale.  Come on down and stock up on summer reading material.  All money earned goes toward postage costs – we hope to see you there.

Rummage Sale!

We will be having a rummage sale on Saturday, June 2, at 2310 E Street – hours are 8 am to 3 pm.  There will be literally thousands of books for sale, as well as a wide selection of household items and other miscellaneous good stuff.  Come check it out, find a great deal, and help us meet our considerable postage bills.

If you have items to donate for the sale, please bring them by our workspace, or contact us to arrange for pick up.

We Need A New Home!

After nearly three years behind Rocket Donuts kitchen, BTP needs to vacate ASAP to accommodate expansion of their business.  We sincerely thank Rocket Donuts for their generosity in providing us with such a wonderful working space.  We will certainly miss the friendly employees, and the wonderful smells!

Ideally we are seeking a donated space (or very low rent) of 800-1000 square feet, with heat and light, ability to lock up, access to a restroom, and daytime as well as evening access.  Due to the logistics of moving tens of thousands of books, along with associated shelving and infrastructure, we would like to have the space available for at least a year.

Bellingham BTP is a 501 (c) 3 organization, so the commercial value of the donated space could be declared as a tax deduction.  If you have any ideas or suggestions, please contact us.

Community Co-op Shopping Day

We are pleased to announce that the Community Food Co-op has selected BTP to be one of the organizations involved in their community shopping day program.

On Saturday, January 21 we will be tabling at both store locations in an effort to increase public awareness of our organization.  2% of total sales from both stores will be donated to BTP for that day, so please save your shopping for Saturday, January 21, and come out and support BTP.

We would like to sincerely thank the Community Food Co-op for this outstanding fund raising opportunity.

Whatcom Give-A-Thon

Come join us at the 3rd annual Whatcom Give-a thon on Friday, December 2 between 1:00 and 7:00 p.m. at the former Value Village building at 3990 Meridian Street.

We will be having a book sale, as well as various other goodies, and a raffle of course.  Many local charities will be on hand – come find a great deal on holiday gifts and help out some worthy causes.

November 2011 Fund Raisers

Multi-Faith Alternative Holiday Market

Please join us Sunday, November 20 from 1-4 p.m. at the Church of the Assumption, 2116 Cornwall Ave

Numerous charities and nonprofits will be on hand.  A great opportunity to find holiday gifts while putting your money to a constructive use.


Introducing the late night library series at the Bellingham Alternative Library:


Books to Prisoners benefit during Late Night Library.
The Bellingham Alternative Library is holding two benefits for Books to Prisoners in November.  November is Angela Davis Month according to the BAL’s featured revolutionary program. Angela Davis is a living revolutionary who continues to educate about, and fight to end, the prison-industrial-complex.  She will not be attending, but many of her essays and footage from her talks will be featured at the library.  While the library will have handmade BTP merchandise on sale all month, the main fundraisers will take place as “late night libraries.”  On the 11th and 25th (2nd and 4th Fridays) of November the BAL will be open an additional 3 hours, from 7-10pm.  Admission is $3-$5, sliding scale.  All proceeds go to Bellingham BTP.
The prison-industrial-complex Davis speaks of is a term used to desribe the rapid expansion of the US inmate population due to the political influence of private prison companies and businesses that supply goods and services to government prison agencies.  Businesses have a hand in incarceration, thus lobbyist and PR agents have a say when a community is considering different routes to mitigate social issues.  The building of a new prison is often the only measure put forth.
Help us celebrate Angela Davis, spread the word on the Prison-Industrial-Complex, and bring more crucial postage money to Books to Prisoners.
The Bellingham Alternative Library, located at 717 North Forest shares its 3,000 books with the public every day from  2 to 7pm.  It will be featuring revolutionaries Audre Lorde in December, and Emma Goldman in January.