Eau Claire (WQOW)- Some conversations are hard to start with your kids, but one area non-profit is offering some help.
Family Conversation Kits are books specifically chosen to help families address important topics through reading. The kits also include guides that have tips to help facilitate those conversations.
"I want our kids to be able to see themselves in the literature that’s reflected, but I also want kids to also see other kids who are different than them, and that’s how we can start to have these conversations that are really important," Co-Leader of Family Conversation Kits, Yia Lor told News 18.
"As a team we believe that in our community we’re such a welcoming community, we care about our neighbors, but it’s one thing to feel like we’re a welcoming community and another thing to truly understand our neighbors who are different from us," said Becky Linderholm, another co-leader of Family Conversation Kits.
The main goal of the kits is to discuss diversity and equity with children.
"Without having those conversations what does that do to our kids as they grow up as well, too? So, really building that foundation for them, and starting really young and having that conversation with them," said Lor.
Right now, the kits focus on the topic of race, specifically Asian and LatinX (Latina/Latino).
"At times I felt isolated I felt really alone as a child and not really knowing where I fit. I think that had I grown up where resources like these kits were available, not only to me so that I could see myself reflected in literature because I think that’s also important too, but I think that having my classmates be able to look at those resources and their families as well too and a better understanding of who I am and why I’m sitting in their classroom," explained Lor.
Linderholm told News 18 there are plans for future kits that will focus on African America, Muslim and LGBTQIA.
"I hope that I’ve laid a good foundation for them to start to recognize when someone’s treated differently and hopefully be able to say something about that, and feel confident in saying ‘hey, that’s not right, I noticed you said this’ or ‘I saw this happen and that doesn’t seem right’ and to be able to stand up and be an ally for their friends who are marginalized," Linderholm said.
Family Conversation Kits can be found, free of charge, at the following locations:
- L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library (Eau Claire)
- Altoona Public Library
- Chippewa Falls Public Library
- Boys and Girls Club Mary Markquart Center (Eau Claire)
If you’d like to support Family Conversation Kits so they’re able to purchase books and supplies, click here.