Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and his wife Ayesha are driving their efforts to increase equity within education forward. KPIX-TV reported the power couple has unveiled plans to create libraries in underserved communities throughout Oakland.
The project—dubbed Little Town Libraries—is being led through their nonprofit the Eat. Learn. Play. Foundation. Launched in 2019, the organization creates initiatives that sit at the intersection of education, health and wellness to improve the lives of youth and their families in the Bay Area and beyond. As part of this new effort, the Currys are joining forces with the neighborhood book exchange nonprofit Little Free Library to build libraries in communities like Fruitvale, West and East Oakland and Chinatown. Steph and Ayesha hope to distribute over 50,000 free books through the cultivation of 150 libraries.
They say tackling the widening literacy gap starts with ensuring that literature is accessible. “We want to encourage kids to read by making it accessible, fun and inspirational,” they shared in a statement, according to the news outlet. “We hope that these free, book-sharing libraries will help plant the seeds needed to continue growing a culture of literacy for the next generation in Oakland.” Organizations like the Black Cultural Zone, Oakland Public Library and the Oakland Literacy Coalition will manage the libraries.
The Little Town Libraries project comes months after they converted a school bus into a learning hub where children from Oakland’s disadvantaged neighborhoods could advance their reading skills, play sports and receive fresh meals. In 2020, they donated thousands of books to students within the Oakland Unified Schools District. Efforts like the ones being led by the Currys are needed as research shows children from Black and Brown communities in Oakland are disproportionately impacted by the literacy crisis.
Several power couples are putting the focus on empowering youth. NFL player Russell Wilson and his wife songstress Ciara founded the Why Not You Foundation to advance children’s education and health initiatives.