Celebrating Little Free Libraries Around the World

By Lexie Neeley

As we wrap up our 10 Years of Little Free Libraries celebration, we want to take some time to honor our international stewards, who are often the first folks in their regions to start a Little Free Library!

In the United States and Canada, finding a Little Free Library is pretty easy, but elsewhere in the world, it can be a bigger challenge. These stewards are helping expand book access in places far and wide and inspiring others to do the same. Cheers!

Charter #39692 in Solagna, Italy

Library story: “La nostra Little Free Library è installata su una vecchia cabina telefonica vicino ad un faggio secolare, sullo sfondo i Colli dove cent’anni fa si svolse la Grande Guerra. Troverete libri per tutti, grandi e piccini, da leggere sotto il sole estivo o d’inverno davanti al caminetto.”

“Our Little Free Library is installed on an old telephone booth next to a centuries-old beech, in the background the Hills where the Great War took place a hundred years ago.
You will find books for everyone, young and old, to read in the summer sun or in winter in front of the fireplace.”

Charter #40862 in Bayombong, Philippines

Library story: “Project D’CURE – LFL (Developing the CUlture of REading through Little Free Libraries) was inspired by the Little Free Library Organization that caters [to] the reading needs of the community-academic and leisure. Books and other reading materials are stored in the little house-type shelf which can be accessed anytime and for free. This project will restore the love of reading not only to learners but also to the entire community. “

Charter #42722 in Yerevan, Armenia

Library story: “This library was installed in July 2018 at Smart Studio in the Shengavit district of Yerevan by Little Free Libraries in Armenia, a project of Open Book Initiative NGO. It is the 15th official Little Free Library in Armenia. Library construction by Karen. Library artwork/design by Ofelya Harutyunyan.”

Charter #72573 in Zabolotia, Ukraine

Library story: “Цю шпаківню для Публічної бібліотеки смт Заболоття, що на Волині, зробили учні Заболоттівської школи-інтернату, а розмалювали учні загальноосвітніх шкіл селища Заболоття та села Заліси з учителями Марією Бебес та Аллою Білітюк. Публічна бібліотека, смт Заболоття, вул. 1-го Травня, 27, Ратнівський район, Волинська обл., 44142”

“This birdhouse for the Public library of Zabolotye village in Volyn was made by students of Zabolotiv boarding school, and painted by pupils of secondary schools of Zabolotia village and Zalisesy village with teachers Maria Bebes and Alla Bilityuk.
Zabolotia Town Public Library May 1, 27, Ratnivskyi district, Volyn region, 44142″

Charter #81785 in Bhopal, India

Library story: “This Little Free Library is in the beautiful fountain garden of the apartment society. Nice shady tress, manicured lawn planted with seasonal flowers and rose bushes with strategically placed benches, there cannot be a better location for a passionate reader. After all as Jorge Luis Borges said- ‘I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library.’”

Charter #82144 in Thamreet, Oman

Library story: “المكتبة المجانية الصغيرة بمدرسة ربكوت هي اول مكتبة صغيرة مجانية في مدارس السلطنة، وتهدف الى نشر ثقافة القراءة في المجتمع،تحت مبادرة قرّئني كتابك وستكون نقطة البداية لنشر فكرة المكتبات المجانية الصغيرة في المدارس والمؤسسات الحكومية والمنتزهات على مستوى سلطنة عمان”

“Free small library at Rebkot School. It is the first free small library in the schools of the Sultanate, and aims to spread the culture of reading in the community, under the initiative of read your book. The starting point will be to spread the idea of small free libraries in schools, government institutions and parks throughout Oman.”

Charter #82541 in Snåsa, Norway

Library story: “Bergsgrenda mikrobibliotek er sesongåpent i perioden mai – oktober. Ta en bok – del en bok.”

“The Bergsgrenda micro library is open seasonally from May to October. Take a book – share a book.”

Charter #86092 in Pesaro, Italy

Library story: “Inaugurata il 29 Giugno 2019, questa LFL è stata fortemente voluta dalla locale associazione di volontariato VILLA C’È, con la collaborazione del Comune, realizzata da Laura Tenti, è la prima del Quartiere 8, collocata nel parco pubblico antistante alle scuole dell’ infanzia e della primaria di Villa Ceccolini, mira a condividere testi per tutte le età ed anche tattili, in Braille e in CAA.”

“Inaugurated June 29, 2019, this LFL was strongly supported by the local voluntary association VILLA C’È, with the collaboration of the Municipality, created by Laura Tenti, it is the first of the Quartiere 8, located in the public park in front of the schools of childhood and of the primary of Villa Ceccolini, aims to share texts for all ages and also tactile, in Braille and in CAA.”

Charter #90991 in Nilai, Malaysia

Library story: “Our Little Free Library has been donated by Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) on 6 May 2019. Currently managed by Pusat Sumber (Resource Center) of Sekolah Men Keb Dato’ Mohd Said, Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia.”

Charter #91669 in Coyaima, Colombia

Library story: “Una biblioteca para la gente de Coyaima, Tolima.”

“A library for the people of Coyaima, Tolima.”

Charter #92198 in São Paulo, Brazil

Library story: “Free book library. Rotary and shared read initiative. Come make literary discoveries and collaborate with the cultural collective!”

Charter #93033 in Étoile-sur-Rhône, France

Library story: “Our library is right in front of our shop, just opposite the War Memorial . Easy access 24hrs a day with nearby parking. We have a grocery shop which is open Tuesday to Saturday 8.30am to 12.30pm and 3.30pm to 7.30pm. Closed Sunday afternoon and all day Monday. I’m English, my husband French so in our library there are both French and English books. Don’t hesitate to use our library any time and pop in to the shop to say Hi.”

Charter #93995 in Bad Ischl, Austria

Library story: “Am Rand der kleinen, kleinen Stadt liegt ein alter verwahrloster Garten. In dem Garten steht ein rotes Haus – und vor dem roten Haus steht ein kleines, rotes, offenes Bücherhäuschen. Darin finden sich allerlei Lese-Schätze: vielleicht ist auch ein Buch dabei, das genau auf dich wartet … “

“At the edge of the small, small town is an old neglected garden. In the garden is a red house – and in front of the red house is a small, red, open bookshelf. It contains all kinds of reading treasures: maybe there is also a book waiting for you …”

Charter #M72020 in Opole, Poland

Library story: “We love books and are reading our kids also in English as we are bilingual kindergarten and nursery. We took and old doll house and turned it to a book shelter 🙂 Here is our short story but we are open to write down a bigger piece about how and why it all started :)”

You’ll notice that nearly all these little libraries were designed and built by the stewards and their communities. International shipping can be a serious logistical and financial obstacle, but it doesn’t have to prevent you from starting a Little Free Library wherever you are!

Assembling a kit or building your own book-sharing may seem intimidating. We think it just presents another opportunity to take creative control. Fortunately, folks at all skill levels have built beautiful libraries and been kind enough to share their building plans, some of which are linked on our site. You can also look to sites like Pinterest for endless ideas!

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