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On April 2, the American Booksellers Association (ABA) and the Book Industry Charitable Foundation (Binc) announced the Save Indie Bookstores campaign, a fundraising effort that will provide financial relief to independent bookstores impacted by the current public health crisis.
The campaign launched with an initial donation of $500,000 from writer James Patterson and continues to collect donations through the campaign’s website. Funds raised will be granted to independent bookstores to cover operating expenses. The amount of funding awarded per store will be determined by the final amount of money raised and by the number of eligible bookstores that apply for relief.
Independent bookstores with a physical address in the United States or its territories are eligible to apply for funding. Eligible bookstores will also estimate a business loss of at least fifty percent of sales and/or net income during any thirty day period from March 15, 2020, to May 15, 2020, due to the impact of COVID-19. Additionally, they must not have “any other immediate financial resources to draw from,” such as crowd funding in excess of $20,000 or significant cash reserves. To apply, bookstore staff may submit an online application through the campaign’s website by April 27. Visit the website for more information.
Since its inception, Save Indie Bookstores has raised more than $64,000 in addition to the initial $500,000 it received from author Patterson. “In these uncertain times, it’s up to all of us to do our part and to help those in need however we can,” Patterson said of the effort. “The White House is concerned about saving the airline industry and big businesses—I get that. But I’m concerned about the survival of independent bookstores, which are at the heart of main streets across the country.”