Books will be available to purchase online and will be distributed to those most in need.

In these unprecedented times, millions of people have been ordered to stay at home, except essential industries. We believe that literacy is a fundamental right, and providing access to books and reading and writing enrichment will continue to transform lives. In other words, books are essential.

As we pivot our book granting programs during this time, we are shifting our focus to providing in-home libraries for children. We believe that books are essential, and are working to provide them to children in need.

Open Books remains committed to fulfilling its mission during this national emergency.

With schools and libraries closed throughout the city, children, especially from low income households have no access to books. 61% of low income homes have no books at all in their homes.

Open Books is working with the Chicago Public Schools Department of Literacy to distribute books to families who are taking advantage of meal distribution at local schools. The books will be available to purchase through donations on our website and distributed to those most in need.

Open Books trained staff has put together a curated list of 100 highly engaging, culturally relevant new books, including bilingual titles, covering birth to 12th grade reading levels. Books will be accompanied with additional literacy resources and activities for students.

We are asking our supporters to show solidarity with us by posting a photo with your favorite book or current book you are reading and posting to social media using the hashtag, #BooksAreEssential.


Show Us Your Books!