The Root has a very good article about a new program in Alabama started by attorney Freddie Stokes called Books for Boys. Promoting literacy amongst black boys in barbershops was started by a barbershop in Florida last year.
Reggie Ross, the owner of Royal Touch Barbershop, is promoting literacy by asking his young customers to read one of the books he provides while they wait to get their hair cut. Ross extends the option for children to continue reading the book during their haircut. He even asks them to read aloud to him and sparks discussions with them about the book.
According to a South Florida Times reporter, Juan Diasgranados, Ross began this initiative to dispel the negative stereotype that black men don’t read. He began bringing books from his home into the shop and has expanded his shop’s library ever since.
Mr. Stokes launched the program in Pritchard and Mobile, Alabama three weeks ago. According to The Root Mr. Stokes wants to provide books that young black males can identify with. Some of those books include:
His growing stockpile includes biographies, such as Malcolm Little: The Boy Who Grew Up to Become Malcolm X, 12 Rounds to Glory: The Story of Muhammad Ali and Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope.
Check out The Root to read the entire article about Freddie Stokes and his Boys for Books program.