A mother-son duo is hoping you notice something a little different the next time you visit Little Free Library in Dallas. Rachel and Elliott Koppa launched an effort this summer to put 10 diverse books in Little Free Libraries across the city.
“We are trying to hit all 97 of the registered Little Free Libraries in the city of Dallas,” Rachel Koppa said. “Our books have to reflect what our communities look like.”
Rachel and her son Elliott were inspired by a similar project on the East Coast and wanted to bring it to D-FW.
“It is very important for kids and young adults and adults to see themselves in the books that they read,” Elliott Koppa said.
“We need to see all kinds of different races, and cultures, and religions, and ethnicities so that it broadens our horizons and help us be more open and understanding to the world that we live in,” Rachel said. “I want Elliott to grow up in a kind world.
“It’s not about not seeing race or ethnicity or gender or sexual orientation or culture. It’s about seeing it, and recognizing it, and appreciating it,” she added. “And knowing that the things that make us different are what make us interesting.”
The Tran family in Oak Lawn were pleasantly surprised when they noticed the change in their library.
“It was actually really uplifting as we’re going through these crazy times,” Jimmy Tran said.
Tran has three children, two girls and a boy.
“We really want to appreciate the diversity that’s there and to contribute to the diversity,” Tran said. “So I think that this is the perfect initiative at this moment in time in the environment and the world that our kids are going to inherit.”
How you can help
Rachel and Elliott are running the effort off of donations. They have an Amazon Wish List if you’d like to purchase diverse books for the libraries and also a Venmo if you’d like them to purchase books on your behalf.
It makes me feel very, very happy,” Elliott said.
So far, the duo has placed books at a couple dozen locations across the city, but still have many to go.
“If we want the world to change, we have to change it,” Rachel said.