Smile Politely

Human Library seeking volunteers as “books” for April 9th event

Human Library is a fairly new event taking place in Champaign-Urbana — launched for the first time here back in September at the Pygmalion Festival. They have put together another rendition, which takes place Sunday, April 2nd 9th at Champaign Public Library. You can participate as a “book” — and here’s how:

Volunteer books are individuals from all walks of life who have experienced discrimination/marginalization based upon race, religion, sexual preference, class, gender identity, sex, age, lifestyle choices, disability and other aspects of their life and who want to share their experiences to promote knowledge and challenge stigma surrounding their identity.

The Human Library provides the opportunity for the community to share and understand the experiences of others in their community. During a Human Library event, a ‘reader’ (any member of the community) browses our catalog and decides to have a conversation with a book. Our books and readers consistently have a great time participating in Human Library events. Volunteers have said that they gain insight into their own stories and experiences by listening to the questions of readers. They also find connections in unexpected places- through readers that enjoy sharing their stories as much as our books, through finding that there is more acceptance after the interaction, and through the mutual understanding of being human beyond a single identity. Furthermore, our volunteers meet other volunteers from all different backgrounds and forge friendships.

Please fill out this application, and we will be in touch with you about next steps! If you have any questions, please email us at [email protected].

Photo from Human Library’s Facebook page.

An earlier version of this SPlog was posted with the incorrect date, which has been updated.

Executive Editor

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