Pitt hoping to spark conversation with children’s book drive

PITTSBURGH — The University of Pittsburgh is providing books to kids across town, hoping to bring about change in the process.

Pitt said 1,100 books are going to 100 childcare providers in one week as part of Books for Change, the Pitt Office of Child Development’s third annual book drive. Delivery started Monday.

This year’s book drive is focused on “raising anti-racist readers.”

Each book delivery includes 11 different, specially chosen titles. They include proper representation and a strong story of social justice and diversity for kids.

Officials hope the books, all of which were donated, will spark a deeper conversation moving forward.

“We’re hoping to dispel the myth that children are too young to start learning about race and racial identity development and anti-racism,” Shannon Wanless, Director of Pitt’s Office of Child Development, said.

The initial book drive started after the Tree of Life shooting in 2018 in an effort to heal and spread love.

The coronavirus pandemic inspired organizers to give back to child care facilities that have been through some incredibly tough times.

“This year, we looked for sites that were open during the pandemic. This has been a very hard year for early care providers and figuring out how to serve our essential workers,” Wanless said.

Donations will be accepted throughout the year and safely distributed to schools and early child care facilities in 2021. To find out more, CLICK HERE.