Changing the World at 13

Picture this: At age 13 you find yourself in the Forbes’ “30 Under 30” list and you’ve already published your own book. Sounds crazy, right? Well for Marley Dias, this is no joke. It’s her reality.

           It started with a problem Marley realized through her avid reading. Too many times in too many books, she found that black girls were never really main characters. They  either didn’t exist or would be relegated to serving as side characters, e and so, tired of the lack of representation, Marley decided to change the world.

           Marley began by  creating a social media campaign called #1000BlackGirlBooks. She planned to collect 1,000 books in which black girls are the main characters and donate them to  libraries around the country. She exceeded her goal and has now reached over 11,000 books, truly showing that even at a young age you can start changing the world. Wanting to touch lives on a more global level,  the young girl is now reaching for 1 million books to donate around the world.

           Having already authored a book,  Marley’s achievements have surpassed what many thought  a 13-year-old girl could do. She’s breaking barriers that minorities  often face alone , allowing “mirrors and windows” to exist for kids internationally. As told to Chicago Tribune, Marley states, “When I say mirrors,  I mean I want these stories to be reflected for the black girls who are reading them, so they can see themselves and identify themselves and learn about their history. When I say windows, I mean open up to people who are different, to understand and to see and grow from those things we don't understand.”

            As if it weren’t enough, Marley isn’t planning to stop there. According to PBS, she’s thinking of creating a global book club, something I definitely would look forward to. These days we need that type of connection in order to learn compassion and understanding, to find  similarities with each other and embrace our differences. Books can cross barriers and they will continue to do so with the help of this inspiring 13-year-old .


Check out her book Marley Dias Gets It Done: And So Can You!  here!

Photo Credit: Goodreads