Two new libraries in Uganda

Books4Cause has finished collecting books for our 117th and 118th libraries: one for the Bishop Angelo Tarantino Memorial Secondary School, and one for the Hope Kebir Nursery and Primary School, both located in Uganda. These libraries each hold 1000 books, curated to ensure the appropriate reading level and good condition. The books have been boxed and shipped and are on their way to Uganda!

All of the books on the shelves, ready to be boxed and sent

Book boxing in progress…

The books are boxed and ready to be sent!

If you would like to contribute to changing lives through building libraries, you can arrange a pickup or drop off your books at any of our locations today!

You can learn more about the African Library Project here.

Going global in Avondale

Did you know that our free library in Avondale has a shelf of books in Spanish and French? We have a number of children’s books, as well as some young adult and adult books. Accessibility and literacy are both very important to us, so we want to ensure that everyone in our community finds something that they can enjoy in any language. Our next project is expanding the shelf to include books in other languages as well!

We have a few children’s books in Spanish available on the book cart outside, but the majority are on our indoor shelf, labeled “Global.” Our current favorite find is a collection of classic folk tales with side-by-side translations in Spanish and English. Come pick it up while it’s still here!

Lincoln Park Free Library is Officially OPEN

Books4Cause has officially moved into our new free library location in Lincoln Park! In addition to our location in Avondale, our library at 2025 N. Lincoln Ave is a place where you can pick up all kinds of books––all for free!––to take home and enjoy. We carry books of all genres, for all ages, so there’s something for everyone. We also have a selection of DVDs.

You can also drop off book donations here! We accept all types of books, DVDs, CDs, vinyl, and electronics. We greatly appreciate all donations, which go towards building libraries in Africa, as well as stocking our two Chicago libraries.

We look forward to seeing you soon!

Lincoln Park Free Library Hours:
Monday-Friday, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
2505 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL, 60614

Avondale Free Library Hours:
Monday-Friday, 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM
2933 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL, 60618

Skokie Drop-Off Location:
Donation Vestibule Open 24/7
3415 Madison St., Skokie, IL 60076

Lincoln Park Free Library Sneak Peek!

Work in progress…

We are so excited to announce that our second free library in Chicago will be officially open to the public on Thursday, September 24th! The Lincoln Park location will have a selection of books for all ages, much like our Avondale location, and will also feature art pieces from local Chicago artists. These pieces will be available for purchase, with 10% of each sale going to Books4Cause. It’s a great way to find new art for your home, support a local artist, and support a small business at the same time! Additionally, Lincoln Park is a drop-off location. You can stop by 2505 N. Lincoln Ave. to drop off donations or pick up free books from 12:00 PM-5:00 PM, Mon-Fri.


Today, we are working on getting the store all set up: bringing in bookshelves, organizing the furniture, et cetera. Tomorrow, we’ll be choosing which books to put out and hanging up the first few art pieces. Wednesday will be finishing touches, and finally, Thursday we will be open! 


If you would be interested in hanging some of your art in the gallery, please contact Maya Lifchitz,


The Avondale Free Library will remain in operation in addition to Lincoln Park.

Vampires, ghosts, and pumpkins, oh my!

One of our favorite features of the Books4Cause free library in Avondale is our book cart, kept directly outside the store! We have a featured selection of kids, young adult, and adult books available on the cart, which we restock and refresh every day with more options. We’ve noticed that vampire novels especially seem to be flying off the shelves––maybe there’s something spooky going on in Avondale…


So we’ve decided that in honor of Halloween coming up, our cart will be featuring any and all paranormal and spooky books for the next few weeks! Please stop by and check them out, and be sure to come inside for lots of other featured books!

Meet the Books4Cause Librarians!

Maya Lifchitz is a sophomore in the film program at DePaul University. She has been with Books4Cause since her father first started the company in her bedroom in West Rogers Park. She loves to read philosophy and classic novels, and can often be found working on a screenplay or collaging. Her favorite book is The Fall by Albert Camus.


Molly Hart is the newest Books4Cause librarian. She joined Books4Cause this summer to help run the Avondale location. Currently a sophomore, she intends to major in Women’s Studies with a minor in English and ultimately pursue a career in journalism. She has always held a passion for reading and writing, so she loves working in an environment where she’s surrounded by books all day. The most recent book she enjoyed is Just Kids by Patti Smith.


Come stop by our free library (2933 N. Milwaukee Ave) to say hello!


The Books4Cause free library in Avondale has a new addition: the bestseller table! Here, you can pick from our featured selection of free bestsellers, Pulitzer Prize winners, and classics. Some featured titles that we have available this week are:

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson (#1 National Bestseller)
The Help, Kathryn Stockett (New York Times bestseller)
The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown
Persuasion, Jane Austen
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Mark Haddon (National Bestseller)
Olive Kitteridge, Elizabeth Strout (Winner of Pulitzer Prize)
Get a Life, Nadine Gordimer (Winner of Nobel Prize in Literature)
And many more!

These go fast, so come pick up your free copies while they last!

Making a Local Difference: NBC 5 Visits Books4Cause

On Friday, August 22nd, Chris Hush with NBC’s Channel 5 News visited the Books4Cause Avondale pop-up library. He interviewed founder Yosef Lifchitz and his daughter Maya for a feature piece on the 5:00 news, where they discussed the founding of Books4Cause, our current projects around Chicago and the rest of the world, and our vision for the future. 

We had a great time talking to Chris and telling him about what we do at Books4Cause. Maya remarked on his enthusiasm regarding the free libraries, “It’s exciting to see the reaction to the idea of a free bookstore. There’s such warmth from everybody we talk to about it.”

NBC also left a fun message on our art mirrors. Come check it out at 2933 N. Milwaukee in Avondale and pick up free books today!

Watch the full clip here:

Check out our feature from Block Club Chicago on August 3rd:

Thank you letter from South Africa

Here is a picture of the librarian at one of the libraries in South Africa.  In the background are the Home Depot boxes we have sent.  (Time to put our own branding on it.  We did put stickers on the latest boxes).  Gosh great advertising for Home Depot I wonder if people think we are sponsored by them.  Nope, we just use their boxes.  To their credit I told them about our project and the did want to give them to us for free.  Too much paperwork.

Anyways here is the librarian

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Here is their thank you letter they sent to us.


Clothes and Sporting Goods

Books4Cause now accepts clothes and sporting goods.  These items will be resold to support our operations.  Donate your new or used gently used sporting goods and we will turn them into libraries in Africa.  We are  now accepting gently used brand name and  designer clothing.   Donate today to help build the future of the African youth.  Education and knowledge is the only way to escape poverty.