DIverse Books

Books have the power to be mirrors, windows, and doors*—chances to see ourselves in a broader context, glimpses of worlds and lives beyond our own, and opportunities to learn and grow.  


Despite the fact that 37% of the U.S. population is comprised of people of color, only 10% of children's books published from 1994-2012 contain multicultural content.*

In the Portland area, low-income households, where children often have less access to books and less early experience with letters, are disproportionately comprised of communities of color or English language learning households (Multnomah County's 2014 Report on Poverty).  In fact, nearly 75% of preschoolers that The Children's Book Bank serves each year come from communities of color and/or English language learning homes.  

All readers benefit from seeing their lives and communities reflected and celebrated in the books they read.  This means that for children from diverse backgrounds, multicultural books increase interest in reading and help them find a sustained connection to books.  But reading diverse books also prepares all children for the real world, teaches respect for all cultures, and fosters curiosity about the wider world.  

Through our A Story Like Mine project, The Children's Book Bank aims to bridge the gap between the need for culturally diverse books and the lack of availability.  To get involved, visit our Support A Story Like Mine page.