AAUW is soliciting donations for the 54th and final of its used book sales

The 54th and final AAUW Used Book Sale to raise scholarships for women will take place April 2-3. Photo by Min An/Pexels

The Wilmington branch of the American Association of University Women is ending its five-decade tradition of selling used books that raise scholarships for women due to its dwindling membership and inability to find enough volunteers.

The 54th and final sale will take place April 2-3 at its Reading Room off Maryland Avenue.

In the meantime, the group is asking for donations of hardback, paperback and audio books, as well as CDs, DVDs, vinyl records, games and puzzles.

Book sale president Tina Gardner said in a press release that the Wilmington branch is ending with regret, joy and hope.

Sorrow because it ends a tradition that began in 1969; the joy of knowing that sales have recycled physical media and helped many New Castle County women go to college; I hope the branch will find a way to continue the scholarships.

“A college degree is such an important foundation for a life of financial success and contribution to society, and we’re happy to have helped so many deserving women,” Gardner said. “And we will continue to do so, with your generous support.”

Since the Wilmington branch began offering scholarships in 1965, it has helped hundreds of women pay for their college education, Gardner said. She wasn’t sure exactly how much, but said that in recent years he’s been able to provide about $100,000 in scholarships to 22 women each year.

The average scholarship is $4,000, and once a woman receives a scholarship, she can apply for more until she graduates.

Interested donors should contact the branch at aauwwilmscholars@gmail.com. Donations for the final sale will be accepted on Mondays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. until March 17, 2022.

Used book sales have been popular fundraisers at AAUW branches across the country, but branches are increasingly dropping sales, according to the press release.

The Wilmington branch’s final sale will be from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, April 2 and Sunday, April 3 at its Reading Room at 8 Germay Drive, off Maryland Avenue in west Wilmington.

From 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, admission is $10 and numbers will be given out to account for building capacity. Admission is free the rest of the sale. All day Sunday, customers can fill a bag for $10.

The latest state and federal coronavirus guidelines will be followed for this final sale.

Paperbacks start at 50 cents and most hardbacks are $2. Art books and coffee table books cost up to $5. Collectibles are priced individually.

For this sale, thousands of new items join the remaining items from the last sale. More details can be found at wilmington-de.aauw.net/home/donatebooks.

Scholarship information is available at https://wilmington-de.aauw.net/scholarships.