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Since 1989, western literature and expertise have been in great demand in Bulgaria. At the same time, schools, libraries and individual students cannot afford to buy books published abroad. Over the past three years, the Center's Book Donation initiative has become very popular in Bulgaria. Thousands of recipients eagerly await the distribution of each shipment of books.

CSD started its book donation activities as an official partner of the U.S. Sabre Foundation in November 1990. The Sabre Foundation collects university level textbooks and other specialized books published in the United States within the previous three or four years, and ships them to Bulgaria for free distribution. For its part, CSD is responsible for selecting the most useful and relevant titles for Bulgaria. The books are then processed and distributed to universities, research institutes, secondary schools, public libraries, hospitals and health centers, and to thousands of individual recipients. The Open Society Fund, Sofia contributes to the costs of book processing and distribution.

Total Number of Books Donated in 1991 - 1993

Over 93, 000 books and textbooks

Market Value of Books Donated in 1991 - 1993

More than .5 million

Number of Recipients in 1991 - 1993

Over 250 institutions and 4000 individuals

  • universities and high schools
  • secondary and vocational schools
  • research institutes
  • public libraries
  • hospitals and health centers
  • public organizations
  • NGO's (associations, foundations, unions, etc.)
  • students
  • medical doctors
  • researchers and university professors
  • engineers and technicians
  • economists
  • others

At the beginning of 1994, the Center for the Study of Democracy received, processed and prepared for distribution the seventh shipment of books donated by the Sabre Foundation. This shipment consisted of 18,000 volumes of about 550 titles. The books were given away to approximately 210 organizations including hospitals, schools, universities, academic institutes, governmental and administrative units, banks, private companies, individual professionals, scholars and students. Many of the recipient organizations held informal exhibitions of the donated books. An official exhibition of books was organized at the Central Library of the Medical Academy in Sofia.

The eighth shipment of books from the Sabre Foundation arrived in late April 1994. It included about 9,000 volumes of 2,626 titles. The books were distributed among the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, the Technical University in Gabrovo, the Higher Institute of Chemical Engineering in Sofia, the University of Mining and Geology in Sofia, the Food Industry Institute in Plovdiv, the Central Agricultural Library, the Institute of Veterinary Medicine in Stara Zagora, the medical universities in Sofia, Plovdiv, Varna, Pleven and Stara Zagora, and the National Oncological Centre.

An exhibition of books donated by the Sabre Foundation opened at the building of the Presidium of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences on November 29, 1994. It was organized in cooperation with the Open Society Fund, Sofia, and the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. Other exhibitions were organized at the University of Mining and Geology, the Higher Institute of Chemical Engineering and the Higher Institute of Architecture and Construction.

The ninth shipment of books donated by the Sabre Foundation arrived in December 1994. This shipment contained 10,000 volumes of 40 titles.

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