Thank you for your interest in making a school or office supply donation or in running a book / school supplies / pencil drive. We welcome your desire to help us make a difference.
Children in Africa are in dire need of school supplies. The average classroom lacks the basic essential school supplies that make for a meaningful educational experience for kids. The parents are unfortunately not in a position to provide the quality and quantity of supplies needed. The lack of school supplies negatively affects the quality of the education tat the children receive.
Develop Africa has responded to this need and is facilitating the donation of school supplies to needy and deserving schools.
Please note that we particularly welcome your donations of school, office and related supplies. You can send these in without making a donation to cover shipping to Africa.
Donate: If you already have school and office supplies that you do not need (regardless of the quantity), please send them to us. We welcome new and gently used supplies of all types.
Collect: If you would like to collect and send us school supplies, then you are also in the right place. We welcome your desire to help.
Recommended List of School Supplies
- If you would like to purchase supplies online, you can ship them directly to the shipping address below.
- We can provide you with a tax receipt. Just let us know you want one.
Recommended Item: Solar lights for use by children when studying. Many children have to study using hazardous kerosene lanterns. Cost about $40 to $50. To order go to: http://www.amazon.com/d-light-
Recommended Item: Netbooks / Laptops / Kindles / iPads / eReaders
Recommended Item: Stackable or folding Chairs- Did you know that many schools in Africa do not have adequate school furniture? The furniture in many instances is not comfortable and conducive for learning. In some schools, children unfortunately sit in the floor or have to buy / bring their own chairs. We welcome your help in addressing this problem and providing decent chairs that will aid learning. Stackable chairs are ideal because they are easier to ship and occupy less space. Different sizes for different ages are welcome. Let's together remove this impediment to learning and education.
Recommended Item: Spiral bound, composition and other notebooks
Recommended Item: Donations for Uniforms and shoes. $40 provides two uniforms and a pair of shoes for a child. Put "For Uniforms" in notes when you donate.
Backpack and other book bags
Colored pencils, crayons and markers
Ruler with English and metric measurements
Pencil boxes / cases
Pens and pencils
Pencil sharpeners (individual and classroom)
Reams or boxes of paper
Organizing a Drive: If you would like to coordinate a School Supply Drive please follow the below steps and see the “Information You Need to Note / What We Need From You” Section.
Step 1- Choose dates and a drop off location
Step 2- Fill out our online drive registration form
Step 3- See our sample flyer and press release to spread the word within your school / college / community. *Be sure to note the items that are most useful and encourage people to donate money also to help with shipping costs.
Step 4- Take pictures (send us a few at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Step 5- When the drive is complete, please be sure to read through all of the FAQ and all the shipping details.
**Feel free at any point to call or email me with any questions, concerns, comments you have. My email is email@example.com and my number is 850-499-8335.
Information You Need to Note / What We Need From You
1. Inform us - fill out our convenient online drive registration form
2. Advertise and promote the book / school supplies / pencil drive, if you would like. Should you have any newspaper coverage or create any posters, we would like to receive a copy.
3. We would like to add information and pictures about your group and activity to our website and newsletter. There are several advantages of this - Including publicity and recognition for your group members, motivation to other groups etc. Additionally, this helps us to expand our impact. Please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
4. Your drive / activity will be carried on at your own risk. As Develop Africa will not be there physically to participate in or monitor the situation, we cannot be held liable for any occurrences. Please proceed only at your own risk.
5. We require that all book donations include a donation (suggested $50.00 for each average size box of books) to help cover the cost of shipping books.
Shipping / Mailing Address for All Boxes / Merchandise
Please fill out one of the forms at http://www.developafrica.org/drive_registration first. Please include a suggested donation of $50.00 per box to help cover cost of shipping the items to Africa. Donations towards shipping can be sent in check, money order or made online at http://www.developafrica.org/donations.
1906 Knob Creek Road, Suite 3
Johnson City, TN 37604, USA
Donate Towards Shipping:
Donating towards shipping supplies is the best way that you can help. Help cover the cost of shipping supplies to Africa. Freely providing all the books and supplies we receive costs thousands of dollars yearly in shipping costs. Please make a donation today to help pay for shipping.
Another way to help cover the shipping costs is to consider buying or selling on eBay, click here for more information.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I receive acknowledgement of my supplies donation?
Yes! We are so grateful for all of the supplies we receive and deeply appreciate the time involved in organizing and holding a supplies drive or fundraiser for Develop Africa. We are happy to mail you a certificate expressing our appreciation after the donations are received, and we will specifically name your group or organization when doing so. If there are specific names you would like included on the certificate, please include a letter with your donation that lists the individuals or group/organization name.
Can I receive photos showing my donated supplies after they are delivered to the children / schools / communities for which they were intended?
While we would love to be able to provide photos to every donor to show how much the recipients appreciate the supplies and to provide assurance that the donations have arrived safely at their intended destination, unfortunately this is not always logistically possible. Here are 2 scenarios that affect this:
When donated items are mailed to our Tennessee office, they are repacked into larger containers (typically drums) prior to shipment to Africa. This means your donated items will need to be removed from their original packaging/box and combined with donations from others in order to ship these items in the most cost-effective manner. In this scenario, it is practically impossible to keep track of specific items from specific donors and to photograph them at the time of arrival in that same manner.
When donated items are mailed to our shipper in New Jersey, they are sent "as is", in their original packaging. In this scenario, it is easier for us to keep track of specific items from specific donors and to photograph them at the time of arrival in that same manner. However, this option ends us being more costly for Develop Africa and donors who prefer this option may be asked to provide full funds coverage for those shipments. We are quoted the specific cost after the box(es) are received by our shipper. This is usually an average of $50 per box. Please feel free to contact us for more information if you wish to pursue this option.
Should I Send You Photos of The Supplies That I Want to Donate?
Yes - we would love to receive photos of the supplies. You can submit a photo through our contact form or email us directly at email@example.com
When offering a large number of items, we sometimes will specifically request photos before receiving them. This helps us in deciding whether or not we can use them and in estimating shipping costs
Do You Accept Teaching Supplies / Aids?
Yes, we welcome your donations of teaching aids and supplies.
What Kind of Books Do You Accept?
We accept general reading books for children of – novels, story books etc. Due to the fact that book needs in Africa vary, we do not accept random or single text books. We will consider text books that are donated in a group / quantity – for instance 20+ of the same type.
I want to donate school supplies. Are financial or monetary donations required?
As you realize, shipping is expensive. Monetary donations are welcome as they help us ship the school supplies that you donate. School / office supplies are welcome without a monetary donation, as they are in high demand.
While we accept these in-kind donations without requiring a financial donation, we deeply appreciate any funds you can provide towards shipping them to Africa. You can make a donation online or send us a check / money order. We cannot do what we do without public support from people like you. Every bit helps!
Please note that a monetary donation is required for books.
Are company-branded items accepted – for instance pens, stationery, shirts, bags with a company logo?
Yes, you can donate these items and they are welcome.
Will I Receive a Receipt for Tax Purposes?
Yes - we will be happy to provide you with a tax receipt for your donation of items to Develop Africa. Please note that the determination of the value of the items donated is up to you. You can optionally provide a purchase receipt (if available). Be sure to ask for one and we will get this sent to you.
I am a Teacher of an Elementary School and I Would Like to Send Notes / Pictures and Receive The Same From the Students When They Receive The Items
We will be happy to set up a relationship between the school / center in Africa and your school. Please indicate this when contacting us - supplying full details about your school, how you intend to do this and for how long - and we will get the process started.
I Would Like to Ship The Supplies Directly to a School. Can You Provide an Address?
Shipping works differently in many countries. In some countries, tax is levied / charged for even donated items (or there is a lengthy process to obtain tax exemption). Also in many instances, the school will have to clear the items from a port. They would simply not be delivered to the school. Imagine a case where the school is 150 miles or more away from the port. The school will have to send someone to clear the items and cover the cost of internally (within the country) shipping the items to the school.
With this in mind, we prefer to follow through with shipments to ensure delivery at the school. We certainly do not want donated items to be abandoned at the port or discarded because of some levied fee / cost when they are only 100 miles away from the school.
We typically use a clearing and forwarding shipping agency. These agencies are responsible for delivery to the schools and have done so reliably. We have 2 specific agencies that we contract with in the UK and USA. We can provide their addresses / contact information on request.
We will be happy to provide a direct shipping address to the school. Please ask when contacting us and clearly indicate how you plan to ensure that the items will get to the school.
What Does it Cost to Ship Books or School Supplies to Africa? How Much Do I Need to Donate to Cover These Costs?
The key issue in getting books and supplies to Africa is covering shipping and delivery costs. It costs an average of about $50 to ship and deliver an average box to Africa. This price of course varies from country to country - with some countries being more expensive and other cheaper. We typically consolidate shipments and ship items in drums.
Book Donations: We receive several offers of books monthly and unfortunately are not able to accept any book donations that do not also include a donation to cover shipping costs. If you could help raise funds to pay their shipping to Africa, that would be great. We can provide a tax receipt as necessary. This amount could be paid directly to our shipping agencies or online - our website / PayPal, UK donation page, Google Wallet etc.
School Supplies Donations: We also receive several offers of school supplies monthly and are successful raising on-going support to help cover the cost of some of these supplies. These supplies are in high demand in Africa and much appreciated. Your donation to cover the cost of shipping these supplies is very welcome, but not required.
Do You Accept All Kinds of Books - Apart From Children's Books
We currently only accept children's books. We are considering accepting other types of books in the future.
Can I Specify The Country to Which The Books Will Be Sent?
We would very much like to send books and school supplies to every country. As you may realize, shipping to some countries is very expensive and more difficult to follow up on. Additionally, we would need to establish a partnership in each country.
It takes time and extra resources to investigate and follow up with shipping, local schools etc - when everyone specifies a country. We are simply speaking not there yet. As a result, we do not currently support this.
How often do you ship school supplies? What countries do you ship them to? How do you ship them out?
We typically accumulate the books and school supplies for an average of 3-6 months (depending on the volume we receive) before we ship them out. We ship them in drums / barrels like as you can see in this flickr album.
We ship the drums of books / school supplies to Sierra Leone, Liberia, Cameroon and Tanzania. Frequency varies by country.
We generally send them to a shipper / consolidator who forwards / delivers to the destination country.
What are the dimensions of a medium-sized box?
We accept school supplies in boxes of any size. Books, we ask that you send in medium-sized boxes, no larger than 18"x18"x18" Remember, the shipping cost is $50 per medium-size box.
Do you accept used school supplies?
We do accept used school supplies, but we ask that you send gently used school supplies. Something you yourself would not mind receiving as a gift.
What countries do the supplies go to?
Below is a list of some of the schools and organizations where our books campaign, teaching and school supplies, distribution and scholarship has made an impact.
Eva Houston Primary School - Kissy, Sierra Leone
Modern Elementary School – Tengbeh Town, Sierra Leone
Tower Hill Kindergarten and Primary School – Freetown, Sierra Leone
Murray Town Army Municipal School - Freetown, Sierra Leone
Saint Joseph’s Primary School - Freetown, Sierra Leone
Forum for Africa Women Educationalists (FAWE Primary School for Girls - Freetown, Sierra Leone
UMC Primary School at George Brook / Dwazark - Freetown, Sierra Leone
Christians in Action Church EDucation Department - Freetown, Sierra Leone
Saint Joseph’s Primary School - Freetown, Sierra Leone
Door of Hope After School Program - Wellington, Sierra Leone
National Pentecostal Secondary School - Freetown, Sierra Leone
Cilira Nursery and Preparatory School - Juba, Sierra Leone
United Brethren in Christ Primary School - Lumley, Sierra Leone
United Brethren in Christ Primary school – Wellington, Sierra Leone
Murray Town Municipal School - Murray Town, Sierra Leone
St. Timothy's School - Moshi, Tanzania
Royal Foundations Early Breed Nursery / Elementary School - Monrovia, Liberia
Bitame Lucia Nursery and Primary School in Nkolfoulou, Cameroon
- Edmond Mosh Davies Memorial Primary School, Sierra Leone
- Thompson Bay Elementary School, Sierra Leone
- Pilgrims of God Church School, Sierra Leone
- Vickrays Community Primary School, Sierra Leone
- United Brethren Academy School
- Roman Catholic Primary School, Kamawornie Village, Sella Limba Chiefdom, Bombali District
- Sembeh Pieh Primary School, Hamilton Village, Sierra Leone
- Hamilton Pre-School, Hamilton Village, Sierra Leone
- Rural Education Community School, Bathurst Village, Sierra Leone
- Bathurst Preschool, Bathurst Village, Sierra Leone
- YUTRISH Pre and Primary Community School, Rokel Village, Sierra Leone
- Emmet Primary School, Lumley, Sierra Leone