Diversifying Denver’s Little Free Libraries with ‘Read in Color’ Program

By Margret Aldrich

We are thrilled to launch our Read in Color diverse books initiative in Denver in partnership with local charity BookGive. Through the initiative, ten new Little Free Library book-sharing boxes will be established in high-impact areas and more than 2,000 diverse books will be distributed to promote understanding, equity, and inclusion.

“Book access is essential, yes. But the right books make all the difference,” said Melissa Monforti, Executive Director of BookGive. “That’s why we’re proud to make diverse books more accessible. So that we all read books reflecting all of our stories.”

To celebrate the launch of the first Read in Color Little Free Library in Denver, BookGive hosted an event at Park Hill Station Apartments, an affordable housing community in North Park Hill managed by Delwest, and home to nearly 300 residents. The launch party included a Little Free Library ribbon cutting and dedication, a book giveaway, community organization booths, and a reading by Nyasha Williams, local author of the book I Affirm Me: The ABCs of Inspiration for Black Kids.

Read in Color celebration attendees pose with author Nyasha Williams (middle).

“Today’s installation typifies Little Free Library’s approach,” Metzger continued. “We are a catalyst, working with local partners to inspire readers at the neighborhood level. The ability to find and choose a book should be an everyday circumstance, not a limited, special event. The key to success is working side by side with local literacy advocates and we are honored to add BookGive as one of our partners.”  

As part of the Denver activation, LFL purchased books from local woman-owned bookstore The Bookies, including Sabrina & Corina by Kali Fajardo-Anstine, Your Name is a Song by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow, Rain Is Not My Indian Name by Cynthia Leitich Smith and I Affirm Me by Nyasha Williams.

To date the Read in Color initiative has launched in 12 U.S. cities, from New York and Washington, D.C. to Atlanta and Phoenix, with plans for even greater expansion this year. More than 150 Read in Color Little Free Libraries and 30,000+ diverse books celebrating Black, Latinx, Asian, Indigenous, LGBTQ+ and other important voices have been shared so far.

Join us! Sign the Read in Color pledge!

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