Prison Library Project

Prison Library Project

Mission

The Prison Library Project’s mission is to provide free reading materials to inmates nationwide. We prioritize educational and self-help literature as well as recognize the value of literacy development through active engagement with books in general.

Our goal is to promote literacy, personal responsibility, reflection, and growth.

History

Located in the Claremont Forum’s Bookshop & Gallery in Claremont’s historic Citrus Packing House, The Prison Library Project was been a Claremont institution since 1986 and is now a major service project of the Claremont Forum.

The Prison Library Project has grown into a sizable volunteer organization with a distinct vision and identity. The purpose of the Project is to supply books, free of charge, to any inmate who requests them. We try to provide an ongoing invitation to prisoners to embrace responsibility, growth, and a deeper appreciation for the world of books, ideas, and education.

Volunteer Based

The Prison Library Project is a volunteer community service project. The program is led and sustained by volunteers and donors who believe in sharing books to prisoners and bringing compassion and education to the men and women who reach out to us. 

Mission

The Prison Library Project’s mission is to provide free reading materials to inmates nationwide. We prioritize educational and self-help literature as well as recognize the value of literacy development through active engagement with books in general.

Our goal is to promote literacy, personal responsibility, reflection, and growth.

History

Located in the Claremont Forum’s Bookshop & Gallery in Claremont’s historic Citrus Packing House, The Prison Library Project was been a Claremont institution since 1986 and is now a major service project of the Claremont Forum.

The Prison Library Project has grown into a sizable volunteer organization with a distinct vision and identity. The purpose of the Project is to supply books, free of charge, to any inmate who requests them. We try to provide an ongoing invitation to prisoners to embrace responsibility, growth, and a deeper appreciation for the world of books, ideas, and education.

Volunteer Based

The Prison Library Project is a volunteer community service project. The program is led and sustained by volunteers and donors who believe in sharing books to prisoners and bringing compassion and education to the men and women who reach out to us. 

What We Do

The PLP receives more than 300 letters a week from inmates in 600 state and federal prisons and detention centers throughout the United States.

We mail over 15,000 packages of books each year to individual inmates. We also send boxes of books to prison librarians, educators, and chaplains. Our weekly postage bill is about $600. We raised and spent over $32,000 in postage in 2018.

 

Perspective

We affirm and respect the basic human rights of every person whether or not they are incarcerated and believe that intellectual freedom is in the public interest. We support an informed citizen base and assert that all people have a right to access information.

Prison book program unity statement

What We Do

The PLP receives more than 300 letters a week from inmates in 600 state and federal prisons and detention centers throughout the United States.
We mail over 15,000 packages of books each year to individual inmates. We also send boxes of books to prison librarians, educators, and chaplains. Our weekly postage bill is about $600. We raised and spent over $32,000 in postage in 2018.

Perspective

We affirm and respect the basic human rights of every person whether or not they are incarcerated and believe that intellectual freedom is in the public interest. We support an informed citizen base and assert that all people have a right to access information.

Prison book program unity statement

The dictionary helps me study! I am getting my high school diploma in here soon. Thank you!"

I've learned a lot in prison. I guess that was the point! The prison doesn't provide the kind of books I really need, the PLP does. Fiction helps me escape, helps me see the world from another perspective. I've reread the books you sent me many times. I look forward to new books so much. Thank you for what you do.

Thank you for the dictionary. It has been put to good use! It has helped me get through the GED program. I am being released in a few months and I will leave the dictionary to a friend who is also earning his GED. It is nice to know people are out there who still care. I'm looking forward to starting my life again.

I'm finally learning how to read and spell!

I have read and re-read "The Man I Was Destined to Be: Addiction, Incarceration, and the Road Back to God." It was just the book I needed, even though I didn't even know it existed. This book is helping me so much. Thank you

The puzzle and soduko books help me pass the time and use my mind. Thank you for caring about people in prison.

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Donations
Percentage of your donation which goes to the PLP
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Fulfilled Requests
Percentage of letters we are able to fulfill with a book.
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Dictionary Requests
Percentage of letters requesting dictionaries..
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Inmates Released
Percentage of inmates who leave prison

“When the prison gates slam behind an inmate, he does not lose his human quality; his mind does not become closed to ideas; his intellect does not cease to feed on a free and open interchange of opinions; his yearning for self-respect does not end; nor is his quest for self-realization concluded.  If anything, the needs for identity and self-respect are more compelling in the dehumanizing prison environment.”

Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, 1974

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