Colorful Book Spines

Compassion Through Literature 

Increasing inclusion and understanding with free books available in public stands across the Portland metro region


Special Event

Are you ready to turn your thoughts and prayers into action for a more compassionate tomorrow?


We invite you to join us for the grand opening of 2 new Compassion for Literature (CTL) libraries in Newberg and donate some of your favorite, diverse books that are focused on promoting inclusion and understanding. 
The event is on Saturday, December 3rd at 1:00 pm at 211 S. River St, Newberg, OR, 97132 and anytime at the Youth Outreach Yamhill, 719 E. First Street, Newberg, OR 97132.

This is an opportunity for all of us to make a positive impact in our world by providing support to our 2 new library stewards and their community, and showing we care.  We encourage you to take full advantage of the libraries by adding a book that shares some aspect you would like others to know about your life, and by picking up a book about someone else’s life that is unfamiliar to you.  Read it with a CURIOUS and OPEN mind, then SHARE it in another library for others to read.  TALK about it with others to share what you learn and remember to LISTEN (hold back on those assumptions!).  Sprinkle more HELLOS, SMILES, and THANK YOUS into the world. 

The CTL project was created to act against book, clothing, flags, signs, and button banning by numerous school districts across the country. The culture of silencing voices and lives creates assumptions and fear, promotes stereotypes and exclusion, and damages self-esteem, increasing the risk and incidence of suicide, and dismisses and diminishes lives. It breaks us.

Let's be there and show our support.

It began with a simple idea. Could we build community and foster inclusion by reading books about people whose lives are different than ours? By taking the opportunity to walk in someone else’s shoes, hearts and eyes could open as we learn about the daily experiences of others. Thanks to a partnership with The Children’s Book Bank, the Portland Timbers, Third Eye Bookstore, and some skilled craftspeople from the community, 12 libraries were built and installed around the Portland metro region.

Third Eye Bookstore.jpg

Introducing Our Major Expansion!

We are thrilled to announce the donation of an additional 11 libraries by Little Free Library, a nonprofit organization with a mission to build community, inspire readers and expand book access for all. This donation is through their Read in Color initiative, which distributes books that provide diverse perspectives and incorporate experiences from all identities for all readers.

We are the thirteenth city to partner with Little Free Library and their Read in Color initiative. In addition, Little Free Library is donating 200 books per library to give to the community. Like our original libraries, these 11 new installations are located across the region.

Our Grand Launch Party!

As a symbolic gesture celebrating the launch of all our new diverse CTL Little Free Libraries, we hosted a special event on November 5 at Leikam Brewery, a family-friendly restaurant in Portland—and the site of one of the new libraries! We enjoyed fabulous speakers, Valarie Pearce, Sister Shiso Panda, and Stephen Green; book giveaways; and getting to know even more incredible people in our community.

Leikam Brewing grand opening 05Nov2022 (5).HEIC
Leikam Brewing grand opening 05Nov2022 (6).HEIC

CTL Little Library Locations

Here is a list of all of our diverse Little Libraries around the region. Please visit one near you to experience the magic of this unique project that fosters compassion!

Kristen Lambert - 1st LFL RIC library.jpg
Bonnie's LL.jpg

SW Portland

3161 SW Fairmount Blvd. (Residence - Fairmont Loop) 

4106 SW 44th Ave. (Residence - Bridlemile)

5929 SW 48th Ave. (Residence - Hayhurst) 

2624 SW California St. (Residence - Multnomah Village)

2200 SW Sunset Dr. (Residence - RGMS) 

6552 SW 19th (Neighborhood House Wise Transitions)

SE Portland

2518 SE 33rd Ave. (Third Eye Books​)

7836 SE 13th Ave. (Milieu Collective)

2230 SE 147th Ave. (Residence)  

2803 SE Taylor St. (Residence) 

North Portland

5185 N. Michigan Ave., Unit A (Residence) 

NE Portland

954 NE 79th Ave. (Residence) 

NW Portland

920 NW 25th Ave. (Congregation Shaarie Torah) 

4670 NW Columbia Ave. (Residence - Rock Creek)

East Burnside

5812 East Burnside (Leikam Brewing) 


719 E. First Street, Newberg, OR 97132 (Youth Outreach Yamhill)

211 S. River St, Newberg, OR 97132 - Grand Opening 12/3, 1pm!


4625 SW Washington Ave. (Puppernickel) 


500 NE Kane Drive (Gresham Fire Dept. Station 72) 



More About Compassion Through Literature

The Compassion Through Literature project was borne out of the mission of Positive Charge! PDX: to make a positive impact on a collective scale and create community in as many ways as possible. Our first libraries were built by wonderful members of our community and put up around town to help expand our knowledge, understanding, and celebration of all kinds of people, including those of different ages, races, religions, physical and mental diversabilities, gender identities and family structures, financial statuses, cultures, traditions, countries of origin, and more. 

Enter Timber Joey of the Portland Timbers. An avid woodworker, Timber Joey made ten libraries himself and brought them to the attention of The Children’s Book Bank. When they heard about our Compassion Through Literature project, Children’s Book Bank suggested that Timber Joey team up with us, which he did! A grand opening was held in May 2022 for the first installation. But the story doesn’t end there!

Recently, Positive Charge! PDX received a grant from the Oregon Community Foundation to purchase books for its original libraries directly from Third Eye Books, the only black-owned bookstore in Oregon. This grant has allowed us to continue giving books on diversity, equity, and inclusion to readers throughout our community.


With the addition of 11 additional Little Free Libraries, the Compassion Through Literature project will reach readers of all ages across the Portland metro area.

2022 10  Timber Joey
Play Video

Timber Joey Library Celebration

Hayhust Elementary & Robert Gray Middle School

May 2022

04May2022 RGMS CTL little library dedications (2).jpg
04May2022 RGMS CTL little library dedications (11)_edited.jpg

Looking for another way to celebrate Compassion Through Literature?


Make Reading Buddies for Young Readers!

Little children enjoy reading when they have a cuddly friend to share the experience. Join us in sewing, crocheting or knitting Reading Buddies that we will distribute to children through our Little Free Library locations. We have patterns of adorable creations, or you may have some of your own that will bring joy to young readers in the Metro area.