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Pittsburgh's National Books-to-Prisoners Program Needs New Home Fast!
by Rosemary C. Anderson Friday, May. 23, 2014 at 8:44 PM 412-251-7302 1401 Hodgkiss St, Pittsburgh PA 15212

Spring Grass Book'Em, a national books-to-prisoners educational charity, needs a permanent home - a building in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After three moves in three years, we must again move within weeks to either a donated space or to a big building we put money down on for a permanent location. Thousands of prisoners are depending on us!

Pittsburgh's Nationa...
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Short Summary

• Greetings! I am Rosemary C. Anderson, the Founding Director of Spring Grass Book'Em--an educational charity which sends
free books and magazines to prisoners all over the United States, thanks to our bookstore sponsor, The Big Idea Book Store. As a lifelong bookaholic, I find this the perfect program to match up all sorts of books with the people who most need and appreciate them! My degree is from the University of California at Santa Barbara (Sociology and Studio Art, 1974), and I worked as a librarian at Illinois Central College, and then at McGuire Air Force Base in New Jersey (I am a veteran). I have also worked as an editor and publisher of a small art magazine and three poetry presses. In February 2012, I was honored to win the regional Dignity & Respect Award for my work educating prisoners.

• We are attempting to buy a large
building so that we won't have to keep moving every couple years from donated space to space in various basements, which causes us to lose hundreds of hours that could be better spent serving our clients. As we were recently evicted when a church changed hands, I put down $1,000 on a good property in Pittsburgh, where there is plenty of space so we can expand Spring Grass Book'Em's library and service by being able to store extra textbooks such as the ever-popular Spanish 1 and the thousands of dictionaries we need every year. We can also have more worktables and accommodate larger groups of people for Packathons, to help us catch up on our backlog--with free food and music! We LOVE to collect excess <a href="" style="display:none;">fake omega

books from the community, process letters from inmates, pick books and pack'em--this program gets a lot of people involved, including teenagers and seniors. The letters from prisoners are sometimes so touching that they move me to tears. We simply MUST get a space to continue operation and to help these men and women!
• When YOU help us help imprisoned people with their literacy needs, you are helping these human beings not only keep their sanity--you are also helping them expand their minds and vision as well as their job skills, because inmates are very much interested in education and trade skills and
psychology, philosophy, English and GED high school equivalency study books, foreign languages, religion, inspirational, history, nature, classic literature, art, music, horticulture, etiquette, cooking, health and medical, math, sciences--in short, EVERY subject there is! Also, as many are motivated to improve themselves personally and in relationships, YOU are helping their families and also Society to which 85% of all inmates will return as better persons and better citizens. Books are one of the best things in prison!
Remember, keep it concise, yet personal. Ask yourself: if someone stopped reading here would they be ready to make a contribution?

What We Need & What You Get
We need $38,000 to acquire this large house in a good neighborhood on a main road and bus line, near town, and about $12,000 to fix the roof and to fix wiring and plumbing. This is an excellent investment as there is also some space we can rent out to community groups in order to raise money for postage as well as to buy dictionaries and a good photocopier -- we make booklets for the prisoners such as a Legal and Personal Resource Guide with many addresses, phone numbers and groups which help inmates.
• Spring Grass Book'Em is also providing the environmentally-friendly public service of recycling unwanted books in any language and even old textbooks, with some prisoners begging for "even an old textbook on any subject." Talk about a love of learning! And some prisoners are getting into reading for the first time in their lives, and are really appreciating how a book can transport one elsewhere and give them a new direction in life. This is a REALLY important opportunity for them, and one that has changed some lives forever!...Another perk for core volunteers who lift books and boxes a lot is the firming of underarms, legs, and other muscles!
• If we don't raise the full $50,000 for this wonderful building, we will use the funds to acquire another building, because continuing operation is THE most important thing. If we don't use all the funds for a home for our program, then they will go to the purchase of dictionaries and packing tape and other supplies and important educational books for the prisoners. Not one of us volunteers has been paid, not even myself, no matter how many hours we put in. <a href="" style="display:none;">replica omega watches for man

The Impact
• Spring Grass Book'Em is not only needed but desperately needed by many inmates, especially those who are indigent without funds or who have been abandoned by their families. Often their ONLY hope of getting a book is from us. They cherish books and often share with other inmates. Sometimes prisoners have an extra stamp or two, and they enclose it with their orders (along with prayers, blessings and good wishes) to help us the only way they can. One man traded his supper tray for a stamp, envelope and sheet of paper with which to write to us.... Our help can help them change their lives and jobs for the better--and that will also impact their families and children, and the world!<a href="" style="display:none;">replica breitling

• For seven years, I have worked full time (and more!) on a volunteer basis sending books to prisoners, both at Spring Grass Book'Em and at Book'Em in Garfield, which was forced to stop helping inmates from 49 states other than PA when their landlord locking them out much of the time, and began charging Book'Em $1,200 annual rent in addition to the $100 project fee and $1,000 for photocopies no matter how few were made. Also, Book'Em suffered the loss of some key volunteers including myself--the Merton Center Board interfered with our collective by banning me from the building mid-2010 on false pretenses although I was doing most of the work. That was after Etta told me that I am "the new heart and soul of Book'Em." So when Book'Em threw out first the California prisoners, then 48 more states' worth of prisoner book requests, I took them and created a second Book'Em in Brighton Heights neighborhood on the north side of Pittsburgh, and have acquired a donor and volunteers.
When we have adequate postage money, we send packages of books to approximately 400 inmates each month; when we don't have enough postage, we send books to 100 prisoners or to as many as we can. Each package costs between $2.50 and $7.00, with most averaging out at $3.50 each. I continue to stay with this program because it's one of the best charities in the world, and truly needed!
• You can take a look at our Facebook page -- -- and at our humble, under-funded website -- --and read some of the many testimonials we get from prisoners. We want to add pictures of more volunteers soon. Our goal is to share resources with as many people as possible, so we network with other prisoner support groups both locally and nationally.
Other Ways You Can Help
Some people just can’t contribute, but that doesn’t mean they can’t help:
• If you are unable to donate now, please keep us in mind as a grateful recipient of unused postage stamps, and office supplies such as scotch tape, clear 2” packing tape, copy paper, postcards & notecards & envelopes of all sizes, glue, markers, and books in any condition--especially dictionaries and thesauruses and world almanacs (books can be sent cheaper by media mail). Also, it would be great if you could publicize our cause to your friends and relativesand people you meet. Our informative brochure can be sent to you by email attachment from or OR by snailmail (PO Box 71357, Pittsburgh, PA 15213 USA). One man <a href="" style="display:none;">replica iwc watches
sent us a box of his old chess books—a favorite game in prison. Thank you for caring!

Myself at the old Book'Em 2009
by Rosemary C. Anderson Friday, May. 23, 2014 at 8:44 PM 412-251-7302 1401 Hodgkiss St, Pittsburgh PA 15212

Myself at the old Bo...
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