Children getting sense of belonging from donation of books to local store

Donation of books to local store helping families explore the world of reading

BRADDOCK, Pa. — The Free Store in Braddock got a new donation of children’s books this week, expanding the store’s collection to be more inclusive.

“From parents saying, ‘Oh my gosh, this looks just like my daughter. I can’t wait to read this tonight with her,” Gisele Fetterman, wife of Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, said.

Fetterman opened the store almost 10 years ago. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a place people can go to get clothes, food and even books.

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From the very beginning, Fetterman bought books showcasing diversity for her own children. She would then donate them to the collection at the store for other people to benefit.

This week, that collection expanded even more. FedEx held a multicultural book drive and then donated close to 150 children’s books, featuring diverse characters and authors, to the store.

“We only know we belong in spaces if we see ourselves in them, and if we have kids seeing themselves in spaces from the very beginning, I think it helps all of us. It allows all of us to dream bigger,” Fetterman said.

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