Chicago, IL – DL Mullen and her team at Semicolon Books are leading a movement this Valentine’s Day that goes well beyond cards and candy. This year, the team at Semicolon is hoping to make February 14th National Black Literacy Day, which will promote efforts to increase literacy of young children who are black across the state of Illinois and beyond.
“It is our responsibility as a Black owned bookstore to help our community,” Mullen says. “It’s also a responsibility we do not take lightly and we will not take it lightly for as long as we are in existence.”
The month of February is special for numerous reasons and brings further emphasis to the importance of National Black Literacy Day.
Mullen says, “It is during Black History Month, on Frederick Douglass’ birthday, and we also wanted it to coincide with Valentine’s Day so that, while people were in a loving mood, they’d hopefully direct some of that love towards underprivileged communities.”
While Mullen and the team at Semicolon Books are focused on efforts in Chicago and greater Illinois, the holiday is not just for their state, but should be celebrated across the country.
“National Black Literacy Day should be celebrated by specifically directing your time or resources to literacy programs in your immediate area,” Mullen says. “The YMCA is amazing. But you can contribute by simply reading with a child to help them continue building a connection to the life-changing effects of literacy.”
The holiday is not the only movement underway led by Mullen. There is another growing movement to fundraise up to $200,000 in order to place free books in the hands of children in Chicago who are underprivileged. This campaign thus far as has raised almost $168,000.
“We are in the business of increasing literacy rates by allowing access to literature, because that is what underrepresented groups do not have,” Mullen says.
To contribute to these efforts, you may reach out to Semicolon Books by going to their website at www.semicolonchi.com or by donating directly to their fundraising campaign at https://www.gofundme.com/f/reading-is-a-revolutionary-act.