Announcing the Diverse Books for All Coalition!
Updated: Sep 18
October 19, 2022
We at Book Harvest have big news to share!
This week, a coalition of 27 organizations from across the US, led by the nonprofit social enterprise First Book, announced they are joining forces to address the lack of access to diverse and affordable children’s books. We are proud and honored that Book Harvest is a member of the Diverse Books for All Coalition. The inaugural work of the Coalition is being supported by a $1 million, 18-months grant to First Book from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
This work affirms Book Harvest’s deep commitment to what Dr. Rudine Sims Bishop calls “mirrors, windows, and sliding glass doors.” At Book Harvest, we are devoted to ensuring that every child has access to books that reflect their own lived experiences and that provide an authentic portrayal of children whose backgrounds, abilities, and circumstances may be different than their own. In this way, children can develop an appreciation for the universe of human experience from their earliest years.
This week, the Diverse Books for All Coalition announced an ambitious goal: to double the number of affordable, quality children’s books by and about diverse races and cultures over the next five years.
What will the Coalition do?
We will unify the market of nonprofits such as Book Harvest to leverage the power of aggregate buying to influence the availability and pricing of diverse books.
We will frame and launch a unifying narrative at the national level to promote the importance of diverse books in response to book bans and challenges.
We will provide critical support and resources to help educators advocate for, access, and use diverse books in their schools and communities.
We will ensure that parents/caregivers have a voice in defining and advocating for representation.
What is the scope of the problem?
According to the Cooperative Children’s Book Center in the School of Education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the inequity in children’s book publishing is significant. In 2021, 3,183 children’s books were published in the United States.
Of those 3,183:
436 were about Blacks/African Americans
337 were about Asians
234 were about Latinos/Latinas
62 were about Indigenous people
21 were about those of Arab descent
6 were about Pacific Islanders
Of those 3,183:
307 were written by Black/African American authors
463 were by Asian authors
311 were written by Latinos/Latinas
47 were written by Indigenous authors
21 were written by those of Arab descent
8 were written by Pacific Islanders
Who is in the Diverse Books for All Coalition?
In addition to Book Harvest, the founding members of the Coalition are:
American Academy of Pediatrics-CA3
Campaign for Grade-Level Reading
Heart of America
The Leaders Readers Network
National Association for the Education of Young Children
National Black Child Development Institute
Parents as Teachers
Raising a Reader
Reach Out and Read, Inc.,
Reach Out and Read Greater New York
Reach Out and Read Rhode Island
Read On Arizona
Reading Is Fundamental
Room to Read
Save the Children
The American Federation of Teachers
The Patterson Foundation
Too Small to Fail
We Need Diverse Books
Zero to Three
The full press release announcing the Diverse Books for All Coalition is here.
As a proud member of the Coalition, we at Book Harvest look forward to updating you on our progress toward our big collective goals in the months ahead!