Books for Troops increases fundraising efforts.

Books for Troops, Inc has secured the assistance of support services of NY, Inc. to help them with their fundraising efforts. Support Services of NY, Inc contacts residents throughout New York State for donations on behalf of Books for Troops, Inc. 

If you have any questions or concerns about our fundraising efforts (Support Services of NY Inc.) or you would like to make a donation, please contact us at (518)372-7747.


Get to Know Books For Troops, Inc.

BOOKS FOR TROOPS, INC,  (BFT) was started in southern Saratoga County, New York, in April 2010 by retired school teacher, Ellen Keegan who wanted to gather books to send to our troops serving in Afghanistan and Iraq,  Her idea was to give them a source of escape from the horrors they were seeing each day; to offer them a release from loneliness, boredom, stress, homesickness, and fear; and to show them that they were not forgotten by those at home that they were sacrificing so much to keep free. 

Books For Troops, Inc. also wanted the books to remind the soldiers of home and to give them the message of how grateful and proud we were of them.  Our mission has expanded over the years since BFT has been in existence to include 18 VA hospitals across the US; the American Red Cross Wounded Warriors Program, as well as the families of the troops, in particular the children.

Mission Statement

BOOKS FOR TROOPS, INC, was founded to send "care packages for the mind" to the troops in Afghanistan and Iraq by providing a variety of books that help ease their fears, loneliness, boredom, stress and to allow them a temporary escape from the horrors that they see and live daily.  It was also founded to raise awareness of the sacrifices, both big and small, that our troops are making to protect us and to remind them that they are not forgotten. 


Books For Troops, Inc.'s goal is to not have books be one of the sacrifices that the troops have to endure.  BFT believes that books help:

  1. alleviate boredom that the troops often mention as the biggest enemy of their off-duty time;
  2. offer a means of escape from the horrors of a soldier’s daily experiences;
  3. bring a sense of home to our soldiers;
  4. make available a quiet time to reduce stress and to relax;
  5. create a time to forget;
  6. provide a distraction of something less stressful to think about;
  7. remind our soldiers “you are not forgotten” by the people they are protecting.;
  8. provide the same for the injured troops in VA hospitals and facilities across the U.S.;
  9. the deployed and injured connect with their children through the use of children's books; and
  10.  offered "Medicine for the Mind" (la ibrary inscription on the library building in Thebes, Greece) where not just the body, but the mind was taken into account.  


Books for Troops wants to send you books, DVDs puzzle books, Books on Tape and comics. Hours of entertainment and escape are an e-mail away. Just send your request, what you would like: puzzle books, books, comics, DVDs, Books on Tape or all 5. If you have a favorite kind of book or author, ( e.g. sci/fi, crime/ thriller, Tom Clancy, Piers Anthony) send your preference with your request.If you prefer Sudoku, crosswords, find a word or variety of puzzles, mention which or all. Include your complete mailing address including APO, AE or FPO, AE. Please mention the date your deployment will end so that the items reach you in time. Let us say thank you for all you are sacrificing to protect us by sending you these "reminders that home is not so far away." We do not want books to be one of your sacrifices and we want you to know that we remember you with pride and gratitude. You are in our thoughts and prayers.  

If any family members or friends would like to have any of the above sent to their deployed friends or family members, please contact us at the same e-mail address and include the mailing address of the person who is deployed.  Books for Troops

 Why Books?

Books For Troops,Inc. was formed to thank the troops for their selfish sacrifices by sending them books. Why were books chosen? Below are many quotes that answers that question.

"Books are the blessed chloroform of the mind." Robert Chamko

"To read is to construct for yourself a refuge from all the miseries of life." W. Someset Maugham

"Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are." Mason Cooley

"To read is to construct for yourself a refuge from the miseries of life." W. Somerset Maugham

"The greatest gift is a book. It consoles, it disturbs, it excites, it experiences places outside the world around it." Elizabeth Harwick

"Books is a refuge from the vulgarities of the real world." Walter Pater

"Reading makes immigrants of all. It takes us from home, but more importantly it finds home for us everywhere." Joan Rivers

"Reading: Medicine for the MInd." (Inscription over the library in Thebes, Greece

"With books I am able to place my own concerns aside and curl myself in the cocoon of somebody else's imagination." Kate Kerrigan

"Every story is a ride to some place and some time other than here and now." A.A.Patawan

"You're never alone when you are reading a book." Susan Wiggs

 "Books support us in our solitude and keep us from being a burden to ourselves. "Jeremy Folder

"A room without books is like a body without a soul." Marcus Cicero

"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most wisest of counselors and the most patient of teachers." Charles William Elit



Within the past month or so, Books for Troops has been given some incredible donations that will enrich even more the lives of the troops. First we received $600 worth of beautiful interactive children's books from Kate Frederick, Danielle Reich and a matching gift by Usborne books. Shortly after we were donated almost 2000  children's books from a book drive done by Loudonville Elementary School as well as a cash donation. Next we received an amazing donation of 190 books on CD rom as well as 1000 DVDs from the Luebbers Family and finally Duncan Brown of Newbury comics donated in two separate shipments over 5000 Marvel and DC comics including the shipping costs to us from Massachusetts of over $6000. The problem is that these wonderful donations as well as the huge stock of book donations we have need postage money to send them. The cost of sending the comics is higher than those of sending the books because they cannot be sent by media mail. While the books, DVDs and BOT's costs about $12.50/box depending on weight, the comics cost $15.00 or more. However the comics are very popular for all the troops and we are thrilled to have the number we have to send. One doctor in a VA hospital wrote to us and said that it was the first time that he saw smiles on his patients when the comics were passed out. 

What we need are more donations for postage, so we are asking people to have a fundraiser for postage or to:

'ADOPT-A-BOX" or pay for the postage of a box or more to our troops. It costs an average of $12.50 to send a box of books or combination of books, DVDs and books on tapes to the troops deployed or in a VA hospital offering them hours of escape. To "ADOPT-A-BOX" just send $12.50 for each box adopted to: (Comics $15.00/ box.)


  All donations are tax deductible. A corporate sponsor would be wonderful or a company willing to do a fundraiser. Please don't let any of these great donations go to waste. Help us send them to those who have sacrificed so much to keep us safe and free. Show them we remember them with a donation that tells them you care about their morale and quality of life.  It is a simple way to say thank you that makes a huge difference. God bless our troops. Ellen Keegan and Books for Trooops  

 WHY BOOKS?     WHEN BOOKS WENT TO WAR by Molly Guptill Manning                  

Books For Troops, Inc. could not have asked for a better book than "When Books Went to War"  by Molly Guptill Manning to convince the public that books have a tremendous impact on the morale of troops living in a warzone, recovering in a hospital, or protecting regional stability in several parts of the world.

Her book focuses on the use of books during World War II as the third major weapon that won the war, the other two being the men and their weapons. The government, led by its President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, united the country into a Victory Book Campaign, organized by librarians across the country when the troops began to ask for books to sustain morale and to counteract boredom. Hardcovers were sent to bases training the troops and libraries were created on the bases.  However the hard covers became a logistics problem when the troops went over seas because of their size and weight. The troops, ever mindful of the weight they had to carry, asked for light and small books that would easily fit into their pockets.

 The government commissioned publishing companies to come up with such books that would be durable and no bigger than six and half by four and a half inches. These books were called Armed Services Editions (ASEs for short.) 12,000 carefully chosen titles were printed as ASEs and over the period of the war over 120 million books were sent to our troops both in the Atlantic and the Pacific.

Manning sites many of the responses that were received concerning the ASE's and the impact they had on morale.  For many -- both at home and in battle -- they were considered very strong "weapons of the war."  Marshall Spaulding, a major in the Army, said that books "made life worth living for our soldiers and the soldiers who fought with ours" and inspired "that amazing spirit of our American troops."  "Even units weary from battle, dispirited and drained, emerged with renewed vitality after convalescing with books."  He goes on to say, "Even though they were trained to kill, and subjected to indescrible brutalities on the front lines, the presence of books seemed to verify that the members of our army are still human beings."  

Manning mentions that General Eisenhower in planning D-Day insisted that all men involved being given an ASE to help with the waiting time that was anticipated before the attack. Countless similar comments and reactions are recounted from all levels of military, the troops, the government at home, and the public. One of the unintended outcomes of the 120 million books being sent to the troops is that the number exceeded the 100 million books burned by Germany. 

The book is complete with pictures of the troops reading in trenches, tents, of the leaders of the movements at home, including President and Mrs. Roosevelt and -- best of all -- an entire list of all the book titles and authors sent.  "When Books Went To War" is a well researched and well documented concise history of the World War II, of the role of books in both winning the war and of them uniting a country in one goal of helping the troops to survive the war's brutality.  That the government considered books so valuable that they included books as a necessary budgetary expense once more testifies to their value. The real impact of the book, however, comes from reading it in its entirety and seeing the expansion page after page of all topics mentioned above and more.

The troops did have a favorite book that required two printings it was so popular. To find out what it was, you have to buy the book. Molly Guptill Manning will be at the Barnes & Noble in Colonie Center in Albany on March 21st from 1-3. I will be there in line to buy another copy of her book since I want to share it with every book lover I know and could never part with my copy. If you can't make it to the book signing "When Books Went To War" is on sale at Barnes and Noble and on Amazon. 

Our Continuing Needs

Books in great condition soft-covered (can be dropped off at any book collection site), puzzle books, Books on Tape, DVD's.. We accepting magazines once more. However, do not include magazines similar to Good Housekeeping, Family Circle, McCalls, or those similar. Magazines must be as current as 6 months of this year. They are very expensive to send and the troops only want those about health and fitness. Many are also starting to drop off hard-covered books again. Please don't!!! 

Money to cover postage (mail checks or money orders to Books For Troops, Inc., 152 Oak Brook Commons, Clifton Park, NY 12065). All donated items remain in Latham unless we have the money to send the boxes of items and books. Please make a donation or support our fundraisers. It is a great way to tell the troops thank you. To see how appreciative they are for all we send them, read letters from 

We are in DESPERATE NEED of people who are strong enough to lift 25-50 pounds to mail our boxes of books to our post office within 2 miles of our office or to carry heavy boxes to other places occasionally. We mail about once every two weeks and ideally we would have a list of people we could call on so that no one person has has to do it all the time. The hours have to be during the day when the post office is open. Please contact Ellen Keegan at ekeegan3@ A mailing takes well less than 2 hours.

We also would love someone to pick up books from our collection site at Halfmoon Town Hall about once a week and deliver them either to Oak Brook Commons in Clifton Park or our office in Latham. Please contact Ellen if you would like to volunteer.  

Book Drives- Many people have offered to do book drives. Right now we have an overflow of books. We need fundraisers to send our books or fundraiser ideas or items. If you are willing to do a fundraiser for us, please contact us at We have a very small volunteer base and because of its size do not have the manpower to do fundraising as well get our books sent to the troops. We also could use volunteers who could donate 2 hrs. a week or 2 to help cover our new office. 

Christian Books- Many are requesting Christian books and Bibles. Please donate them. 

 Bookcases: We are always in need of books cases in different sizes to use for our increasing variety of items and books we receive. If you have a bookcase and can deliver it to our office, please e-mail us at The bookcase must be in good condition. 

People to help with mailings and/or move boxes of books from one facility to another.  We are in desperate  strong people to work a couple of hours a month to help with heavy lifting.  You will really be making a difference!

How You Can Help?

Books For Troops, Inc. is growing everyday!  We need your help!  We now serve, the deployed, injured and recuperating soldiers that are in several of the VA hospitals across the U.S. and their families. 

You can:

  • Donate soft-covered books, puzzle books of any kind, DVD's (may be used but must have plastic cover), CD's,Books on Tape, board games (may be used but must have all the pieces and directions in a box in good condition), playing cards, dice, automatic pencils, markers,( for the puzzle books), small dictionaries, coloring books and crayons. These can be left at one of our collection sites.
  • *We have particular need for Westerns, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror, Historical fiction, Military Fiction and Military History, as well as History & Biography. If you have a big supply of any of these genre, contact Ellen at or leave at a collection site labelled.
    Other Things You Can Do:
  • Have a book drive to collect books, puzzle books, DVD's, donations.
  • Offer to do a fundraiser.
  • Offer to work on a fundraiser.
  • Offer to run errands.
  • If you have good computer skills and are familiar with using a website and Facebook. volunteer to help on BFT's sites.


The troops are always in need of things to help them get through the long nights of nightwatch.  Please consider donating:

  • books on tape
  • DVDs or CDs that are recent and in their containers
  • puzzle books of all kinds
  • coloring books and crayons
  • handheld or small games
  • Skip-Bo, Uno, cards, dice
  • ***letters of encouragement and support
  • children's books (hard or soft covered in excellent condition.
  • books on tape

All of these items are great reminders of home.  You can drop them off at any of the book collection sites or email

New Needs

While we continue to need paperback books in very good condition, we now need as much DVD's (may be used) and puzzle books of all kinds. Almost every request we receive recently has asked for one or both of these items. Since we would like to send several at a time to meet the needs of several in the unit or in hospitals, these items go quickly. Please donate these at the drop sites listed or mail to Books for Troops, 152 Oak Brook Commons, Clifton Park, NY 12065. You can also e-mail Books for Troops at