Materials Donation Policy and Guidelines

Wauconda Area Public Library District


Approved by the Board of Library Trustees July 12, 1999

The library encourages and appreciates the donation of books, compact disks, cassettes, records, videos, and DVD's.

The library reserves the right to accept, decline, discard, or sell in the Friends of the Library ongoing or periodic book sales any materials which are presented or offered. Donated materials shall be handled according to the attached list of guidelines. The Library Director will refer decisions on unusual gifts such as works of art or gifts with significant policy implications to the Library Board for decision.

The library will not provide an appraisal for donations of materials which are accepted for its collection or the book sale. Gifts to the Wauconda Area Library may be deductible for income tax purposes, but the library accepts no responsibility for any individual's use of tax deductions. A receipt for the number and type of items donated shall be provided to donors who request it, as indicated on the Materials Donation Form (attached).

Commemorative Gift Fund

This is a gracious way to remember a loved one or to commemorate a special occasion or event such as an anniversary, graduation, or birthday. A minimum of $20 is required for commemorative gifts. Acknowledgment is made to the donor and to the person or family being honored. Preferences for titles or types of materials to be purchased with gift funds may be stated. The library reserves the right to refuse gifts upon which restrictions are placed.

Guidelines for the Handling of Donated Materials

For information on donating special items, please call the library at 847-526-6225. All donations must be brought to the Information Desk -- donations may not be left outside or placed in book drops. In order to ensure quality and make optimal use of labor and space, donations of materials are limited as follows:

  • Maximum of two boxes at a time
  • Books must be no older than three years
  • Books must be in very good condition
  • No textbooks, magazines, Reader's Digest publications will be accepted
  • No damaged books will be accepted.

Once a donated book has been accepted by the library, there are several paths the book may follow:

The item might be cataloged and added to the library's collection, if the item is approved for acquisition by library staff. In some cases, this may be the expressed intention of the donor, as indicated on the Material Donation Form (attached).

The items might be accepted for sale in the library's ongoing sale of used or discarded items. All multiple-copy library-owned bestsellers which are withdrawn from the library's collection are placed on the ongoing sale shelves, along with many other library-owned books which have been withdrawn from the collection. Many donated books have been sold from these sale shelves. Proceeds from these sales are given to the Friends of the Library, even though many of these books are library-owned. Pricing for the ongoing book sale is to be determined by the library. Members of the Friends of the Library are given a 50% discount on the purchase of these books.

The book might be accepted for sale in the Friends annual or semi-annual book sale. Books which are accepted for this purpose will be stored compactly in a closet designated for this purpose. This closet will hold at least 128 boxes of books (average box size 15"W X 20"L X 11"H). Because these boxes will be stored compactly, there will be no access to them until the week of the book sale. Until the week of a book sale, all handling of donated books within the library shall be done by library staff only. The library will notify the Friends on a monthly basis how full the closet is. The library will not be able to store books outside of this closet. Books donated after the closet has reached capacity will not be accepted at the library for book sale storage.

When the closet is 3/4 full, it is advised that the Friends start planning a book sale to be held two or three months later.

During the week of the book sale, all boxes will be moved by library staff to the Genevieve Lincoln Community Meeting Room for processing by Friends volunteers. For instance, if the book sale is to be held Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday, all boxes will be moved to the Meeting Room by the preceding Monday evening, if possible, allowing four days for sorting and book sale preparation. After the book sale, all unsold books will be disposed of -- none of the books will be returned to storage. 

  1. Library Acquisition

  2. Friends of the Library On-Going Sale of Used Books

  3. Friends of the Library Annual or Semi-Annual Used Book Sale

  4. Disposal

    The book might be unacceptable and disposed of immediately. Examples of such books are books with mildew or damage from moisture, books which are severely worn or damaged, or books which have no apparent sale potential (i.e., textbooks)