New books to broaden perspectives

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    Photo courtesy of Safe Haven Ministries

    A new initiative has placed new book nooks in public libraries for kids in Pre-K to 3rd grade designed to help prevent violence and celebrate diversity.  

    The books encourage readers to grow, engage, read and imagine and will be available at select library locations as part of a new initiative called GERI.

    “We believe in the power of children’s literature to transform lives and broaden perspectives and we work to foster strong partnerships in our community with the goal of improving quality of life for Grand Rapids residents,” said Amy Cochran, MLIS, Youth Services Manager, Grand Rapids Public Library. “We are thrilled that multiple library locations will be offering easy ways for families to participate in this special and innovative reading program.” 

    The titles promote gender equity, empathy and emotion identification and teach about healthy relationships and boundaries. The books came about through a partnerhip that includes Safe Haven Ministries partners, Grand Rapids Public Libraries and a program called SPARK4Change at the MSU School of Social work.

    “Safe Haven Ministries is excited to be partnering with Grand Rapids Public Library to bring the Grow Engage Read Imagine (GERI) Initiative to more families and homes,”  said Mykal Ward, M.Ed, Training and Education Manager, Safe Haven Ministries.

    “It is our hope that increasing exposure to the topics addressed in the GERI collection and companion resources will help affect positive change in social norms, creating a stronger foundation for healthy relationships and communities,” Ward said. 

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