2,020 MAINE Books Challenge Overview 

Purpose: To support local STUDENTS and BUSINESSES during this period of remote learning by getting books in the hands of as many Maine children as possible.

Partners: Educate Maine is working with our network of County Teachers of the Year and Education Leaders Experience alumni to distribute books in all 16 counties. We are also supporting Maine’s independent bookstores. We know this will look different in different places, and we anticipate bringing on more partners as our efforts grow.

For information about how one school is getting books into the hands of students at this time, read on. Thank you for the inspiration, Iris Eichenlaub, 2017 Knox County Teacher of the Year!


  1. Purchase an online gift card in any amount to one of Maine’s independent bookstores (or any book retailer). See below for quick links to where you can purchase gift cards or for info about alternative methods of purchasing from your favorite bookseller.
    • If purchasing an online gift certificate, designate katherine@educatemaine.org as the recipient and she will forward your gift card to one of our county teachers for purchase and distribution to students. Note – several bookstores are adapting to restrictions and not all are currently open. You may want to call ahead.
    • Some booksellers may not offer online gift cards - you can call and ask if they could generate a credit or paper gift card to be held at the desk for now. Make sure you complete step 2 below.
    • Tip: if you are able to coordinate with others in your workplace or community, it would be preferable for one person to make the gift card purchase using everyone's donations as opposed to several smaller gift card transactions. 
  2. Fill out this brief form to help us keep track of our progress toward 2,020 books. You can also specify whether you have a particular part of Maine in mind to receive your gift.

For the purpose of this challenge, we're counting every $10 donated as one book. We will share our progress regularly on our website and through our social media channels. #2020Mainebookschallenge #PayItForwardMaine

Thank you WABI for helping us spread the word!

This one small act of generosity will make a big difference in the lives of Maine students and businesses. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

Quick Guide to Maine Booksellers

[Note - the list below is not exhaustive and you can buy from ANYWHERE you want to support. We are in the process of collecting information about the best way to purchase a gift certificate from each store we're aware of and this information is being added every day.]

If ordering by phone, designate Educate Maine as the recipient and make sure you fill out our form or email katherine@educatemaine.org so we know it's there.