Donate Books or Funds

Donate Books

The principal source of income of the Friends of the Library is the sale of donated books. We gladly accept books, DVDs, audiobooks, CDs, and puzzles in resale condition.

Donation boxes in Main LibraryDonations of up to 1 box may be placed in the two labeled boxes on the right side of the Main Library lobby. 

For larger quantities of books we can accept up to 20 boxes or 15 paper bags of books from each unscheduled donor during a single session.( We define a box as holding one cubic foot of materials.)  This limitation is necessary so we can accommodate numerous donors before reaching our capacity of 100 boxes per session. We will close our donation session early when we have received this amount. If you have a donation greater than 20 boxes please contact us first at  We  will be happy to schedule a time when we have adequate staff available to process your large donation. Depending on the size, it may take us up to 2 weeks to recruit enough volunteers to process your donation.

FOL volunteers will be present, weather permitting, to accept donations delivered curbside, near our storage sheds which sit between the History House and the Police Station. The site is clearly marked when volunteers are present.  If it is raining we can accept up to 4 boxes per donor in the library lobby during the attended donation hours.

The sessions are: 

  • Wednesdays from 2-4 p.m.
  • Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon

General Donation Guidelines:

  • Books must be packed in cardboard boxes or brown paper bags
  • Books in plastic garbage bags will not be accepted.
  • We will ask you to put your boxes on our hand-trucks and we will move the hand-trucks to storage.

 Sorry, but we cannot accept:

  • Storage Shed soon after a Book SaleBooks with missing pages, heavily marked, broken spines, water-damaged, bad smelling or otherwise not in re-sale condition
  • Foreign Language books
  • Home-produced CDs and DVDs, commercial tapes (Cassettes, VHS) or vinyl records (78s, 45s, LPs)
  • Ephemera (posters, postcards, travel brochures, greeting/blank cards, letters, lists, diaries)
  • Reader’s Digest Condensed Books
  • Encyclopedias
  • Magazines
  • Test preparation materials that are more than 2 years old
  • Travel guidebooks that are more than 5 years old
  • Games & toys
  • Donations packed into garbage bags

Donations are tax deductible. Receipts will be available at the time that you drop off your books.

If you have any questions about how to best make a book donation, please contact us.

Donate Funds

If you would like to JOIN the Friends of the Library of Los Altos or renew your existing membership, as well as make a donation, please go to the  membership application form where you can do everything at once. Otherwise:

  • Donate online (donation form)
  • Donate by mail by printing the donation form, filling it out and mailing it along with your check, to the address below. Make your check payable to Friends of the Library of Los Altos and Community.
Friends of the Library
PO Box 212
Los Altos, CA 94023-0212

Memorial donations: Please think of us when making donations in memory of book lovers. When we receive donations in memory of individuals, the money can be used to purchase books that the individual might have enjoyed. For memorial donations, please provide the name of the person being remembered and their interests, and the name and address of the family member or other person who should receive donation notification.

Donate Funds to our Special Program, Books for Schools   

Books4Schools Letters From Students Books for Schools is a designated fund established by the Friends of the Library of Los Altos to pay for the books that teachers purchase for their classrooms at our used book sales. Teachers from K-8 have been taking advantage of this opportunity since May 2019. Thanks to a grant from the Los Altos Community Foundation, the program has been expanded to cover K-12.

Since Books4Schools began the fund has placed over 4000 books in local classrooms. 80 teachers from 10 school districts have participated. Your donation will allow us to continue this very popular program. A dollar given to this fund puts a book in a classroom and supports the library at the same time. All teachers and librarians in publicly supported schools are eligible to register by following the directions detailed below.

To DONATE to the fund, note on the donation form,(and your check if you are not using PayPal) that it is for “Books4Schools.” To donate by mail print  the donation form, fill it out and mail it along with your check, to the address below. Make your check payable to Friends of the Library of Los Altos and Community.

Friends of the Library
PO Box 212
Los Altos, CA 94023-0212

Direct any further questions and/or requests for more information to:

TEACHERS, TO PARTICIPATE, send us an email with your name, school, grade, principal, and principal's email address by 6PM, 2 days before the first day of the sale.  All teachers from publicly supported schools grades K-12 are eligible. 


Friends of the Library of Los Altos and Community is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.  Our federal tax ID is 94-6083773. Your membership and donations are tax deductible as allowable by law.  To learn more about our sources of funds and expenditures, see our Annual Report for the last fiscal year.