Longsight library launches first anti-racist bookshelf in bid to raise awareness of diversity

  • Longsight Library reveals anti-racism bookshelf
  • Bookshelf offers selection of books celebrating contributions from BAME writers and educators
  • Community group passionate about fighting racism through books and gardening

Longsight Library and a community group have come together to create an anti-racism bookshelf launch.

The anti-racist bookshelf is an ongoing project led by community group Let’s Keep Growing and Longsight library, as part of this year’s Black History Month celebrations held by Manchester Libraries.

Characterised by themes of food and growing, the bookshelf offers a selection of 30 books, including cooking books, bedtime stories, poetry, gardening and many more, all of which are written by authors of colour.

The bookshelf was curated by Let's Keep Growing. Image: Longsight Library.
The bookshelf curated by Let’s Keep Growing                        Image: Longsight Library

Founder of Let’s Keep Growing, Mo Blue, 56, said: “The bookshelf shows the contribution of people from different backgrounds and different colours.

“It came at a funny time because of George Floyd and Black History Month.”

The anti-racism bookshelf follows the Black Lives Matter protests which broke out across the country earlier in the year, including several demonstrations in Manchester.

The bookshelf has received positive responses from the wider community, organisations and social media platforms along with support from Manchester Libraries.

Let’s keep Growing is a Black and migrant-led community gardening project founded in 2019 based in Longsight.

The group’s main objective is to create a space where individuals can come together and actively tackle racism and climate change through gardening and books.

Let's Keep Growing Longsight's community group. Image: Roxana Allison.
Let’s Keep Growing community group. Image: Let’s Keep Growing.

From bird box building to community picnics, the community group’s first cleaning and gardening event took place in March 2019 and have since organised more than 15 other events.

The bunch are passionate about bringing people together, welcoming residents from anywhere in Manchester to join in and take part in their free activities promoting their five ways of wellbeing: connect, be active, take notice, keep learning, give.

Longsight library is currently open 11-3p.m Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.