AWC Detroit is Planting “Little Libraries” to Support Literacy

AWC Detroit launched its “Driving Literacy in the D” initiative at a winter mixer on Feb. 7, 2018 by unveiling its first “little library.” The well-attended event at the historic Detroit home of Colleen Robar, owner of Robar PR, gave members an opportunity to learn about Detroit Little Libraries, a grassroots group partnering with the national Little Free Library program to promote reading, community involvement and neighborhood pride.

“Our chapter is making a commitment to promote literacy, said Deniella Ortiz-Lalain, president of AWC Detroit, at the unveiling. “As professional communicators, we understand the vital link between literacy and success. It’s our hope that we can help empower individuals to increase their reading skills through the availability of free books. We are excited for this program. It allows our members the opportunity to participate in an important cause.”

AWC Detroit members brought books to stock the library and voted to install it on the grounds of Mercy Education Project located at 1450 Howard St, Detroit.  The freestanding enclosure, a 3’ by 3’ structure that can contain as many as 30 books, was constructed by AWC Detroit friend and volunteer Wesley Krumel. 

More AWC-sponsored “little libraries” are being planted throughout 2018. Richard Kollins, chair of the Detroit Public Library’s National Library Automotive Historical Collection (NAHC), announced that the NAHC will provide funding for a joint project with AWC Detroit to install four Detroit Little Free Libraries at select Detroit Public Library neighborhood branches.

Guest speaker Kim Kozlowski, founder of Detroit Little Free Libraries and higher education reporter at the Detroit News, shared her story of bringing the little library movement to the city of Detroit. “I am so appreciative of AWC Detroit’s support of this program and equally excited about the joint project with the Detroit Public Library’s National Automotive Historical Collection.  We are well on our way to making Detroit the world capital of Little Free Libraries,” she said.

2018 Installation Events

Library #1 – June 15 at the Mercy Education Project, Detroit

“We are THRILLED with our Little Library and the children’s books have been flying off the shelves…. We remain quite honored to be the recipient of this wonderful complement to our work here…thanks once more for choosing MEP!” Kathryn Tanner, Executive Director, MEP

In partnership with the Detroit Public Library National Automotive History Collection:

Library #2 – July 11 at the Redford Detroit Public Library

Marygrove College Donates to Our Driving Literacy in the D Initiative

July is literacy month at Marygrove and we are honored they have chosen to donate a wealth of books to our Little Free Libraries!  They are helping Detroit readers become leaders!

Library #3 – August 24 at the Parkman Detroit Public Library

Library #4 – September 22 at the Lincoln Detroit Public Library

Library #5 – October at the Hype Teen Center Detroit Public Library

We are excited and proud of our “Driving Literacy in the D” initiative in partnership with the National Automotive History Collection.

To volunteer, contact Melinda Kollins at

AWC Detroit is encouraging all members and future members to become involved in the Little Libraries effort. To donate books, participate in the library launch events, or learn how you can support our advocacy initiatives, contact the AWC Detroit office  at or (313) 327-2256.