The Reach Higher initiative is the First Lady's effort to…
“I Was Sick Of Reading About White Boys & Dogs” ~ Marley Dias
Marley says her motivation is simple: CONNECTION.
“When you see a character you can connect with, if they learn a specific lesson, you’re more likely to apply that to your life.”
Marley Dias at Lingelbach Elementary School in Germantown, collecting books as part of her #1000BlackGirlBooks social action project. Dias cited Mildred Taylor’s “Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry” as a book she’s been happy to discover since starting her project.
An 11-year-old girl in New Jersey was tired of reading books without characters that she could relate to, so she decided to do something about it. Marley Dias has launched #1000BlackGirlBooks to promote books with Black female leads.
The campaign began when Marley shared her frustration regarding her school’s lack of reading material about Black girls. Philly Voice reports:
“I told her I was sick of reading about white boys and dogs,” Dias said, pointing specifically to “Where the Red Fern Grows” and the “Shiloh” series. “‘What are you going to do about it?’ [my mom] asked. And I told her I was going to start a book drive, and a specific book drive, where black girls are the main characters in the book and not background characters or minor characters.”
Cash and book donations can be sent to:
GrassROOTS Community Foundation
59 Main Street, Suite 323, West Orange, NJ 07052
For more, visit the fundraising website here.
PHOTO CREDIT: Andrea Cipriani