Once Upon a Time

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The year was 1996, when a group of Borders booksellers had a dream of helping their colleagues in need. Their idea was simple, collect small donations from a large number of booksellers and make those funds available to a coworker facing a personal financial hardship. The donors wouldn’t miss the $5 or $10 a month that they donated, but added together, these funds could pool together to change someone’s life in a very meaningful way.

While the idea turned out to be not as simple as first imagined, the booksellers and company executives persevered through all the planning, organization and paperwork needed to form a 501 (c)(3) non-profit. Over the years the basic premise has endured; book people helping book people. A strong book industry needs strong and healthy bookstores. Strong and healthy bookstores need dedicated and focused booksellers. Dedicated and focused booksellers need to have a safety net to catch them in times of financial emergency. That is the role that the Foundation has played for the past 20 years.

Over the years, thousands of booksellers have been assisted when facing overwhelming medical expenses, escaping domestic violence situations, recovering after a disaster, struggling with an unexpected loss of household income, dealing with the death of a family member, or facing the loss of their home or essential utilities. No one can predict where or when they might experience a serious financial hardship, but booksellers know that if something happens they can turn to the Binc Foundation for help.

We will spend this year telling the stories of thankful grant recipients enterprising scholarship winners, dedicated volunteers, and generous donors and supporters who were there at the beginning as well as those who have recently joined the party.

As we celebrate this milestone and enter the 20th year of helping booksellers, we need your help to keep this safety net for booksellers in place. Please consider –

  • joining a committee and adding your expertise to help other booksellers
  • becoming a Binc Advocate and spread the word throughout the book industry
  • taking Binc’s 20 for 20 Donation Challenge
    • Sign up as a sustaining donor at $20 per month
      • If you already donate monthly, consider raising your donation to $20 or adding $20 to your existing donation. Email info@bincfoundation.org to change your existing sustaining donation.
    • Make a one-time donation of $20
    • Challenge 20 booksellers you know to donate to Binc

Thanks to the creation of the Foundation, help for booksellers facing financial hardship is no longer a fairy tale. We invite everyone to celebrate with us this year to honor the generous book people who have contributed along the way and to ensure that the Foundation will continue to provide a safety net for those in need well into the future.

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