Books for Kids
Donate Books * Volunteer * Visit our Libraries * Make a Gift
For 30 years, Books for Kids has helped get books into children’s homes. You can help, too!
Research shows that the number of books available to a child may surpass all other variables in predicting their long-term success in school. Since the program started in 1990, Next Door’s Books for Kids program has collected and distributed more than 2 million books to Next Door students and children across Milwaukee.
We need your help to keep our shelves filled! You can donate gently-used books or purchase new books — or host a book drive to multiply your impact.
Visit our Amazon Wish List to purchase the books we need most! The books will ship directly to us. Be sure to include your full name so we can thank you!
Host a Book Drive with your neighbors, school, congregation, youth group, or place of employment! Next Door will provide promotional material, wish lists and special book bins to collect all of your books.
Donate your own gently-used books. Make an appointment to discuss your donation and schedule a drop-off time.
Our high-needs books include board books and picture books targeted to children (infants to five years old), multicultural and multilingual books to represent the children we teach, and social emotional books to help children understand their feelings. Click for a printable Wish List.
We also accept books for elementary, junior, and high school children, as well as books targeted for adults, which will be distributed through our Community Library and Little Free Libraries. We are unable to accept discarded library books.
To get started, contact Jackie at 414.562.2929 x2509 or jshanti@NextDoorMKE.org
SPECIAL NOTE: On-site volunteer opportunities are on-hold at this time due to COVID-19.
Looking for a way to give back to the community? Books for Kids offers several ways to get involved.
Read to children through our “Read with Me” program. Community volunteers read one-on-one or to a small group of children in our Books for Kids Libraries located at our 29th St. and Capitol Dr. campuses. During the week, we offer reading sessions for infants and children up to five years old.
Clean books that are donated and in need of a little TLC. In our special book room, we have all the supplies you’ll need to clean and repair books so they look as good as new when we distribute them to the children. When ready, each book gets a special Books for Kids sticker so the children remember where they received it.
To get started, contact Martina at 414.562.2929 x2529 or mstevens@NextDoorMKE.org
Visit our Libraries
Visit one of our libraries for free books for you, your family and your classroom – to take home forever!
Our Community Library is open to the public every Thursday afternoon from 2:00-5:45 pm at our 29th St. campus (2545 N. 29th St). All community members are welcome to 2 FREE BOOKS per month for themselves and each family member in their home. Teachers may choose 2 FREE BOOKS per month for each student in their classroom.
Our Mobile Library is out-and-about in the community distributing 2 FREE BOOKS to all who come aboard.
Our Little Free Libraries are available for all to enjoy. Currently they are located at our 29th St. campus (2545 N 29th St, inside the main gate, during regular business hours) and our Capitol Dr. campus (near the corner of 53rd and Capitol Dr, open 24 hours).
Special Request Books for your special event, program or office waiting room. To discuss setting up a special order, contact Jackie at 414.562.2929 x2509 or jshanti@NextDoorMKE.org
Make a Gift
Financial gifts will support our Books for Kids program by funding program supplies, upkeep of our libraries, and our Books for Kids Manager and two Library Specialists who help ensure our programming is efficient, effective and engaging. Click here to make your gift!