Donations & Volunteering

Book & Material Donations

Thank you for thinking of us as a possible home for your unwanted books, music, or movies. Donated materials benefit the Library by allowing us to replace worn copies with fresh ones, supplement our collection with additional materials, or raise money for us as book sale items at the Friends of the Brown Deer Library Annual Book Sale in August.

We prefer some donations over others, so please review these guidelines to help you decide if your donation is appropriate for the Brown Deer Library.

We appreciate receiving the following types of materials in clean and new condition for possible addition to our collection:

  • Brown Deer-related materials of historical importance, like business pamphlets, historical documents, photographs of area people and places, etc.
  • Current non-fiction within 5 years of the copyright date
  • DVDs in their original packaging and in excellent condition
  • Fiction in hardcover and paperback
  • Music CDs and audiobook CDs in their original packaging and in excellent condition
  • Textbooks within 2 years of the copyright date

Please donate the following items to a thrift store, school, church library, used bookseller like Half Price Books, or simply recycle:

  • Books that have been written in, underlined or highlighted
  • Books that smell of mildew or smoke or those with yellowed and dusty pages
  • Books with broken spines, loose pages, water warping or other cosmetic damage
  • CDs and DVDs that are heavily scratched, missing original packaging, or copies
  • Magazines
  • Non-fiction older than five years from the copyright date
  • Textbooks more than 2 years from the copyright date

Why We Prefer Some Donations over Others

The Brown Deer Public Library is a popular materials collection that appeals to many users with a wide range of current, attractive, accurate and relevant materials. We collect broadly rather than deeply in nonfiction areas. Textbook editions change frequently and are very expensive. Our magazine collection represents titles we subscribe to, thereby ensuring that complete runs are available. Our materials are heavily used and well loved, making some paperback formats too flimsy for loan. And some items simply won't be borrowed because of poor physical appearance, no matter how wonderful the content is.

Wish List

These are some of the items we are currently seeking for the library:

  • Art supplies
  • Board games
  • Crayons
  • Puzzles
  • Storage bins/totes

Monetary Donations

If you wish to make a donation to the Brown Deer Library, you can now do so online. Just follow the easy instructions.


Thank you for thinking of us!

Volunteering for the Brown Deer Library

Due to concerns over COVID-19, our volunteering opportunities have temporarily been placed on hold. We look forward to the time when we can again take in volunteers.

Offering volunteer opportunities is one part of how the Brown Deer Public Library achieves its mission.

Why Volunteer

Volunteers approach the library for a variety of reasons: for the love of books, to meet school service learning requirements, to boost a resume or college admission profile, or simply to give back to the community. Volunteer opportunities also vary greatly: doing special light cleaning tasks to keep the building clean and attractive for the community, assisting with program preparation and activities, shelf-reading to ensure the collection stays organized, special collections projects to preserve resources for future users, data entry, or assisting with Friends of Brown Deer Library events. Library employees are responsible for shelving books.

Those interested in volunteering should call or visit the library. Applications must be picked up at the library. Applications will be accepted at any time. The library will contact applicants when an appropriate opportunity becomes available. Applicants should expect to have a public record background check and brief informal interview with senior Library staff before being offered a match with an available opportunity.

Volunteers for court-ordered community service cannot be accepted.

Currently Available Volunteer Opportunities

As of September 2019:

  • Bookshelf dusting and cleaning
  • Community room table leg polishing and tabletop cleaning
  • Gaming programming assistance
  • Garden bed weeding
  • Shelf reading - requires training and 6 month commitment