HUDSON, Wis., May 27, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The Little Free Library® (LFL) nonprofit organization launched Read in Color™ today in Tulsa, Okla. This marks the national rollout of the timely initiative, which brings diverse books to LFL book-sharing boxes to help grow understanding, equity and inclusion.
Twenty-six new Little Free Libraries will be established at Tulsa schools, with the first unveiled at Eugene Field Elementary this morning. The libraries are filled with books that provide perspectives on racism and social justice, and amplify BIPOC, LGBTQ and other diverse voices.
LFL and HarperCollins Publishers partnered to bring Read in Color to Tulsa and will launch the initiative in four more cities this year: Washington, D.C., Detroit, Atlanta and Phoenix. Additional Read in Color cities launching in 2021 are New York, Boston, Kalamazoo, Mich. and Ferguson, Mo. Scholastic is also providing generous support for the 2021 Read in Color efforts.
“Little Free Library believes that sharing diverse author perspectives across our nation’s communities deepens empathy and awareness,” said LFL Executive Director Greig Metzger. “This task is large but when advocates join together, significant gains can be made.”
“We are honored to be in Tulsa to launch the national rollout of Read in Color in collaboration with HarperCollins Publishers’ Read in Full Color and Scholastic Books’ The Power of Story,” he continued. “These robust, diverse book offerings combined with the local programming and placement assistance of Reading Partners Tulsa, will bring our Read in Color program to 26 local elementary schools this year. We are excited to mark the start of our national expansion with such great allies.”
As part of the initiative, HarperCollins Publishers is offering 100 copies of I Promise by LeBron James, with illustrations by Nina Mata, for a national giveaway. Artwork from I Promise, part of their “Read in Full Color” initiative, decorates the Tulsa Little Free Library unveiled today. Readers across the country can enter to win a copy of I Promise here.
“HarperCollins is thrilled to be partnering with Little Free Library in conjunction with our own ‘Read in Full Color’ initiative, which spotlights diverse creators and inclusive stories,” said Nellie Kurtzman, VP Marketing & Publicity, HarperCollins Children’s Publishing. “The books under our ‘Read in Full Color’ umbrella reflect the narratives of the young readers picking them up for the first time and serve as a reminder that these books are important, necessary and in demand.”
Lizette Serrano, Scholastic’s VP Educational Marketing, said, “When Read in Color launched last year, we were honored to play a part to align with Scholastic’s initiative, ‘The Power of Story’. At its core, Read in Color will encourage book ownership in more communities and help to grow lifelong readers. Our joint effort in choosing the books that reflect the experiences of young readers of color will inspire them to be true to themselves, embrace who they are and empower them to tell their own stories.”
‘Read in Color’ in Tulsa
The Reading Partners Tulsa region is a vital partner in Tulsa’s Read in Color rollout. Reading Partners, a nonprofit organization that tutors children in reading skills, participated in the planning and placement of the Little Free Libraries, and will help keep them filled with books.
As the Tulsa community commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre, organizers of The Black Wall Street Legacy Festival support partnerships that are bringing resources to the community and amplifying voices that share similar experiences to local students.
“We’re so excited that through the Little Free Library and Reading Partners partnership students, families and the greater community will have more access to texts that feature diverse characters, cultures and content,” said Dr. Tiffany Crutcher, Founder of the Terence Crutcher Foundation and the Black Wall Street Memorial.
LFL’s national Read in Color initiative, which was introduced in Minneapolis last year in response to George Floyd’s murder, has four key components:
- Read in Color pledge, allowing everyone to show their support for diverse books and access downloadable resources.
- Little Free Library installations full of culturally relevant books, placed in high-need communities.
- Free diverse books for applying LFL stewards, purchased from independent and BIPOC-owned bookstores when possible.
- Recommended reading lists representing Black, Indigenous, Asian American/Pacific Islander, Latinx, Muslim, LGBTQ+ and other communities.
Get involved: To learn more and sign the Read in Color pledge visit LittleFreeLibrary.org/Read-In-Color.
About Little Free Library:
Little Free Library® (LFL) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that builds community, inspires readers, and expands book access for all through a global network of volunteer-led Little Free Libraries. LFL received the 2020 World Literacy Award as well as honors from the Library of Congress and National Book Foundation. There are more than 100,000 registered Little Free Library book-sharing boxes worldwide in all 50 states, 110 countries and 7 continents; through them, more than 200 million books have been shared. LittleFreeLibrary.org.
About HarperCollins Children’s Books:
HarperCollins Children’s Books is one of the leading publishers of children’s and teen books. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing quality, award-winning books for young readers, HarperCollins is home to many timeless treasures and bestsellers such as Charlotte’s Web, Goodnight Moon, Where the Sidewalk Ends, Where the Wild Things Are, and The Hate U Give; series including The Chronicles of Narnia, Ramona, Warriors, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Pete the Cat, Fancy Nancy, Divergent, and Red Queen; and graphic and illustrated novels such as Nimona, Invisible Emmie, and New Kid. Consistently at the forefront of digital innovation, HarperCollins Children’s Books delights readers through engaging storytelling across a variety of formats and platforms, including the largest young adult (YA) book community, Epic Reads. HarperCollins Children’s Books is a division of HarperCollins Publishers, which is the second largest consumer book publisher in the world, has operations in 17 countries, and is a subsidiary of News Corp. You can visit HarperCollins Children’s Books at www.harpercollinschildrens.com and www.epicreads.com and HarperCollins Publishers at corporate.HC.com.
For more than 100 years, Scholastic has been a partner to schools. Today, it is the world’s largest publisher and distributor of children’s books, a leading provider of literacy curriculum, professional services and classroom magazines, and a producer of engaging children’s media. www.scholastic.com
Media Contact: Margret Aldrich
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SOURCE Little Free Library