HUMAN LIBRARY 2018
August 4, 2018
That’s Human Library Fort Wayne’s mission and one we carried out for the first time on August 4, 2018 at the Main Branch of the Allen County Public Library. Thirty-five human Books, 70 Librarians (volunteers), and a whopping 225 Readers came together to create that intentional space for conversation and powerful learning.
The numbers only tell a small part of the story however. We creating the space yet intentionally remained open to outcome. This meant that powerful things beyond our expectations and vision could and did unfold. Here is just a smattering of what we witnessed and learned:
A room filled with people willing to share their deepest selves plus individuals willing to listen and witness has an intensity that is palpable. And sacred.
Intense does not mean joy didn’t abound. There were tears, yes, and there was laughter and smiles amid the low hum of conversation.
It wasn’t just the Readers who came to ‘check out’ and speak with Books who were changed. Rather Books were equally affected by the experience. And tired at the end of the day. Turns out it takes an enormous amount of energy to share so openly.
Kids have the capacity to witness, listen and learn. We weren’t sure how our young Readers would fare, but those who came – with and without their parents – had powerful questions and relevant insights. It was cool.
People are longing for this space. We heard ‘Please, do this again!’ over and over as people left their conversations.