Our work changes hearts, minds and lives.

"I'm happy there's an organization out there like yours, because it keeps people like me striving for more."—J.M., incarcerated in PA

Based in Philadelphia PA, Books Through Bars is a volunteer-run organization that distributes free books and educational materials to incarcerated people in PA, NJ, NY, MD, DE, VA and WV. Each week, we receive hundreds of letters from prisoners requesting books. Each year we send over 8,000 book packages. We welcome all who wish to learn and help.

  • Volunteering during COVID-19

    Our public packing sessions are currently on hold, but we are working on other opportunities for remote volunteers. Learn more

  • Donate books

    We are currently accepting limited donations of in-demand books. Email info@booksthroughbars.org for more information. Get the guidelines

  • Why do this?

    We believe education, not incarceration, is the answer to the devastating effects that social, educational, and economic inequality has on communities. Learn more