Midwest retailer Meijer is supporting United Way literacy programs across the Midwest through a new partnership with Better World Books.
The promotion allows customers to drop off unwanted used books in drop boxes stationed at 164 Meijer parking lots.
Collected books will then be sold online, with a portion of each sale going to local United Way agencies. Books that cannot be sold are donated to promote literacy, or recycled to cut down on energy and environmental waste.
The partnership with Alpharetta, Ga.-based Better World Books provides another way for Meijer to continue its long-standing support of the United Way, said Meijer Senior Vice President Julie Croll.
"Not only does this provide a service to our customers, who are looking for a place to drop their used books, it gives them an opportunity to help support their local community," Croll said in a release.
Better World Books, an e-retailer and social enterprise company, gives each partnering landowner a portion of the revenue it receives after selling the collected books. The landowner is then required to share a part of those proceeds with a local literacy- or education-based charity.
Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Meijer expects to donate $125,000 each year to an estimated 50 local United Way agencies in the communities where the Meijer drop boxes are located.
Meijer began its partnership with Better World Books a year ago at four Meijer stores in Indiana. More than 7,000 books were collected during the four-month pilot program, resulting in a variety of energy and environmental savings, including saving 14 cubic feet of landfill space that the 9,937 pounds of books would have taken up.
Meijer rolled the program out to 164 stores across the Midwest in October and expects to collect more than 1 million books each year.