Los Angeles: Have a book? Leave a book. Need a book? Take a book. That is the motto to promote literacy through LAPD neighborhood lending libraries.
Four LAPD Little Free Libraries have opened (77th, Pacific, Olympic and Foothill) and another 10 more are scheduled to open in the next few months. These unconventional libraries are housed in LAPD stations. The libraries are currently stocked by the LAPD officers and a local non-profit organizations, A Chance for Children and BookEnds. There are no late fees, no library cards and no telling what books you might find within.
The specifications are this: The library cannot exceed 36 inches by 36 inches by 36 inches. They require little or no maintenance, but the LAPD needs donations to keep them sustainable since Little Free Libraries are filled with books for the taking – and the giving.
These LAPD libraries function as an educational and outreach tool to children and community members and build a sense of community, while promoting literacy and a love of books. The Little Free Library is a gathering place where neighbors share their favorite literature and stories. In its most basic form, it’s like a shelf full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book and contribute another one to share. The library is registered in a national registry where community members can locate it online. All books are free for children of all ages and will be listed by age group reading levels.
The Little Free Libraries are already providing a positive influence on the quality of life in the four areas they are open. LAPD Cadets are serving as stewards of the libraries to help teach important life skills, ownership of a project and the importance of community. Additionally, police officers will be involved in providing book-reading programs at the station with local schools.
Community members interested in supporting the libraries and making a tax-deductible donation to the library program should contact Senior Lead Officer Heidi Stoecklein at firstname.lastname@example.org or (213) 486-6090.