Members of six Cobb County organizations gathered together Tuesday afternoon to unveil the result of their collective efforts—the latest local Little Free Library.
The public service project was part of the Literacy & Justice For All program, a city-wide collaborative effort in Marietta to improve third-grade reading proficiency. This gathering also proves that community impact is truly a collaborative effort.
The six organizations represented at the ribbon-cutting included:
- GreenMellen, a Marietta-based digital marketing agency, sponsored the project. The literacy initiative aligns with two of the agency’s core values: always improving and sharing their expertise.
- The Cobb Collaborative is a nonprofit that served as the connection point between all of the other groups. Literacy is one of the Collaborative’s key initiatives for supporting meaningful growth in Cobb County.
- The institution receiving the new Little Free Library was Princeton Academy, located off of Fairgate Road near the Marietta Square. The school was represented at the event by owner and director Offiong Ajayi.
- Christine Ramirez, Director of the Emily Lembeck Early Learning Center, represented the Literacy & Justice for All program. Ramierez helped select Princeton Academy as the beneficiary of the project.
- Carlos Garcia, the Hispanic Liaison for the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office, is a big supporter of local literacy efforts. His team contributed by assembling and installing the Little Free Library outside of Princeton Academy.
- The One In Me organization was represented by founders Trace Godoy and Brooke Barard. The group promotes youth empowerment within the community and they brought a bundle of books to stock the Free Little Library, including copies of two children’s books written by Barad.
“This truly was a collaborative effort to make a meaningful contribution to our community,” said Cobb Collaborative president Irene Barton. “We know bringing all perspectives and experiences to the table is important to solve critical problems facing our community.”
Little Free Library is a global nonprofit literacy movement that constructs outdoor spaces to share books within local communities. There are approximately 15 existing libraries in the Marietta area, according to the organization’s website. That’s out of more than 125,000 registered libraries across the globe.
“My kids always love when we come across a Little Free Library,” said Ali Green, co-founder of GreenMellen. “I love that we are able to sponsor the cause and add another location to the map.”
During the event, Garcia shared his story of growing up in Mexico City where books were scarce. This background is why he appreciates how increasing access to books helps all children grow. Research shows that establishing literacy prior to third grade is crucial to establishing a successful future for any child.
See photos from the grand opening and ribbon cutting here.
GreenMellen has been helping Cobb county and Marietta area nonprofits since first opening its doors in 2009. The agency offers service discounts to 501c3 organizations and donates $1 back to a local charity every month for each active client they manage.
Along with the Cobb Collaborative, GreenMellen has also helped support the digital presence of local nonprofits like Kidz2Leaders, Global Hope Partners, Project 82 Kenya, and the Marietta First United Methodist Church.
About the Cobb Collaborative
The Cobb Collaborative is a community nonprofit that trains, equips, and resources other county charitable leaders. Cobb Collaborative is also a marketing client of GreenMellen, which helped launch the organization’s new website homepage earlier in 2022.