How Can I Help?

Read Between the Bars is comprised of collective members and volunteers from the Tucson community. RBtB collective members meet about once a month to discuss fundraising opportunities, tabling opportunities, and to discuss the twice monthly Book-Packing Party.

At RBtB’s Book-Packing Parties, RBtB volunteers (YOU!) match books to requests from people in prison. You read each letter, peruse our library of books, and pick out the books that best match what they’re asking for. Then, you wrap them up and address the package so that we can send it out the next day. Join us! Snacks, fun, and request letters await you.

Book packing parties are the second Wednesdays and last Sunday of every month.

Read Between the Bars is always in search of people to keep the project going strong. You can join RBtB as a collective member or a volunteer. Depending on our current projects, we ask for a time commitment from collective members of one meeting per month, one Book-Packing Party per month (approximately three hours), and/or additional hours to answer mail, sort books, table at events, and raise funds. Any additional time is determined by the individual’s availability. RBtB volunteers join us for our Book-Packing Parties and help the project in other ways like spreading the word about RBtB to their friends, family, and neighbors; picking up book donations for us; and helping us brainstorm creative ways to raise funds.

Interested in joining us as a RBtB collective member or volunteer?
Please e-mail us with any inquiries, questions, or curiosities.

You can also join our e-mail list to receive monthly updates about Read Between the Bars and upcoming Book-Packing Parties.

Other ways you can help:

  • Tell your friends and community about Read Between The Bars.
  • Throw a fundraiser or encourage others to donate money for postage, packing materials, and paperback books.
  • Pick up book donations.
  • Sort and shelve books.
  • Attend a book-packing party. We have one at least once a month. Send us an email if you would like to come!

Read Between The Bars is entirely run by awesome, committed volunteers. We’re a small, grassroots group and we could use help organizing the project. Please get in contact with us if you would like to volunteer.

14 thoughts on “Volunteer

    1. Hi, Eileen. Sorry for the late response to your question. We must have missed the WordPress notification of your comment. Generally our Book-Packing Parties are on the second Wednesday of the month from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. and the last Sunday of the month from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. Our Facebook page ( will give you the most up-to-date information, though, including any of them that are canceled due to holidays and any additional ones that are taking place to accommodate service opportunity groups.

      1. Hi my name is janet my son is serving 30 years he is wanting some books self help insperational. Writers handbook. And legal news thank you here is his address jason neal #294148. Aspc tuscon santa rita. Po box 24406. Tucson az. 85734. Thank you very much

      2. Hi, Janet. We’d love to send him some books, but to do so we’ll need him to send his request to us at our address (located on the right-hand column of our main page). He can request up to three books every six months. We rely on book donations, so we always recommend requesting by subject or genre in case we can’t match specific titles or authors. Thank you!

  1. Is there a similar organization in Phoenix? Also, I have heard that books have to be sent by publishers. What if I want to send books to an inmate that is the son of a friend?

    1. Hi, Pam. We don’t know of any similar organizations in Phoenix that deal specifically with sending books to people in Arizona’s prisons. However, there are certainly other groups that work on prison issues in other ways, such as divestment campaigns. As for sending books to prisoners, publishers and retailers are the safest bet for senders who will get their mailings to the people inside, which is why Read Between the Bars is in care of Daily Planet Publishing. Recognized organizations that send books to people in prison are generally given the green light as well.

      Thanks for your interest!

  2. My name is Celina Hosp I was recently released from Pima County Jail and after seeing the way things are run in our jail and prison system. I am interested in helping bring hope to prisoners and I would like to get involved in advocating for prisoners rights. I think that Read Between The Bars would be the best place for me to start. Please put me on your E-mail list I’d love to get involved.

  3. I am super interested in this. While I live in Phoenix I would be willing to drive down once and while or work as a branch up here and bring books down?

  4. Yes I might be interested in volunteer work with you group. As a former Probation Officer in CA I have some experience and empathy with your clients. Let me know what I can do?
    Bill Simington

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