Great News! First Book.Org’s Commitment to Increase Diversity in Children’s Books!

Following up on yesterday’s somewhat disheartening post about the lack of diversity in children’s literature, here’s some good news! Washington, DC based non-profit organization First Book has just unveiled its Commitment to Action: to create a sustainable solution by dramatically expanding the market for diversity in children’s literature.

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Today, at the 2013 Clinton Global Initiative America (CGI America) meeting, hosted by President Bill Clinton, First Book, a nonprofit social enterprise that provides new books and educational resources to schools and community programs serving children in need, unveiled its Commitment to Action: to create a sustainable solution by dramatically expanding the market for diversity in children’s literature.

First Book aggregates the voices — and purchasing power — of thousands of educators and program leaders who serve families at the bottom of the economic pyramid. Through The Stories for All Project, we’re showing the publishing industry that there is a strong, viable and vibrant market out there for books like these.

“We’ve heard time and again from the educators we work with that one of the biggest challenges to helping kids become strong readers is the desperate lack of books that are culturally relevant to these kids’ lives,” said Kyle Zimmer, president and CEO of First Book. “One of the best ways to turn children into readers is to give them stories with heroes and experiences they can relate to.”

“By aggregating the voice and purchasing power of thousands of educators and program leaders who serve families at the bottom third of the economic pyramid, First Book is showing the publishing industry that there is a strong, viable and vibrant market for diverse content.” Zimmer said. “First Book represents social enterprise at its best and this strategy will lead to the creation of more culturally diverse content that is available to all children, magnifying the impact of The Stories for All Project far beyond the children it reaches directly.”

“This isn’t only about more African-American books for African-American children or more Latino books for Latino kids, but it’s about more varied content so that all children can experience the richness of everyone’s stories,” Zimmer said.”-

Read the entire press release here and First Books’ blog posting here.


2 Responses to “Great News! First Book.Org’s Commitment to Increase Diversity in Children’s Books!”

  1. PragmaticMom Says:

    I was dismayed to find out that diversity is failing to keep up with population growth in children’s books too. I am making a renewed effort to review and promote multicultural books too!

  2. Marjorie Says:

    Yes, it is a worry, isn’t it – and comes slightly as a surprise…