Libraries respond to need for diverse collections, services through Día, April 30

For Immediate Release
Fri, 04/12/2019

Contact:

Macey Morales

Deputy Director

Communications and Marketing Office

mmorales@ala.org

[en español]
 

CHICAGO – Libraries reflect the world around us. With demographic trends pointing toward the United States evolving into a majority minority country, libraries are responding to the need for programs, services and collections that are as diverse as the populations they serve.

On April 30, hundreds of libraries across the country will celebrate Día (El día de los niños/El día de los libros Children’s Day/Book Day), a national library program that fosters literacy for all children from all backgrounds by connecting children and families to diverse books, stories and other library resources. Libraries are a cornerstone of the American dream, offering equal access to information of all kinds and bringing access and opportunity to all. Programs like Día help libraries and librarians provide an inclusive environment in the community where all are treated with respect and dignity. 

This year’s Día celebrations will consist of multicultural events that honor and embrace a child’s home language, heritage and culture. Programming includes story hours featuring a variety of languages, book giveaways and a host of other fun activities for families. The Abilene Public Library is partnering with Ballet Folklórico to celebrate diverse books, cultures and languages with children. The Los Angeles Public Library will host INCA, the Peruvian Ensemble, which will take everyone on a musical journey through Peru. 

The NOLA Public Library will invite guests to venture into a world of learning with a passport. By earning four passport stamps, children will receive a free book. Stamps can be earned by learning a greeting in another language, reading a book about another culture or country, reading a bilingual book or listening to music from another culture or country.

“As librarians, we want to provide meaningful opportunities for all children to see representations of their cultures on library shelves,” said Jamie Campbell Naidoo, president of the Association for Library Service to Children. “Events like Día highlight the many ways that libraries showcase the value that diverse cultures contribute to our pluralistic society. These programs also emphasize the important role libraries play in nurturing critical community conversations around equity, diversity, and inclusion.” 

Día is a nationally recognized initiative that emphasizes the importance of literacy for all children from all backgrounds. It is a daily commitment to linking children and their families to diverse books, languages and cultures. 

Día booklists, program planning guides, shareable promotional graphicsan interactive map of participating libraries and other resources can be found at http://dia.ala.org

To follow or post about Día on social media, please use #diatogether, #sharebookjoy and #STEAMwithdia. 

The Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, is the national home for Día and the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking (REFORMA) and acclaimed children’s author Pat Mora are founding partners of the initiative. Día is an enhancement of Children’s Day, which started in 1925 and was designated as a day to bring attention to the importance and well-being of children. In 1996, Mora proposed linking the celebration of childhood and children with literacy to found Día.