Slavic Village designated First Little Free Library Neighborhood in the U.S.

In 2017, Cleveland’s Slavic Village Neighborhood will demonstrate its deep commitment to improving literacy by becoming the nation’s first “Little Free Library Neighborhood.”

The concept of a “Little Free Library Neighborhood” comes from the creative mind of Little Free Library co-founder Todd Bol of Wisconsin. Bol designed the first Little Free Library in 2009 as a tribute to his teacher mother, and in just six years, more than 50,000 of the little wooden book exchanges have been installed all over the world. Bol, who has visited Cleveland many times for Little Free Library events, says he is thrilled that Slavic Village will be the first community to officially implement his concept. It’s fitting, Bol says, because he came up with the concept after talking with Cleveland leaders in 2013 about the threat the Ohio Third Grade Reading Guarantee posed for children with low reading scores. His goal is to see communities capitalizing on the spirit and grassroots enthusiasm triggered by his little libraries by putting on regular events in their own backyards to improve literacy and promote a love of reading.

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Family, YouthJohn Kocsis