New U of A Project Brings Children, Elders Together, Uses Literature to Explore Identity

Worlds of Words, housed in the University of Arizona College of Education, in partnership with the Southern Arizona Writing Project, is relaunching Salas de Libros (“living room of books” in Spanish, called Salas for short), an innovative literacy program that will bring together children, youth, and elders from many different communities across southern Arizona to explore cultural identity and community through reading. In these spaces, reading spurs personal development, social transformation, helps us understand ourselves and our identities, and works toward a more inclusive world.

The program is looking for 25-30 community members to be trained as Literary Mediators, volunteers who will commit to attending four mediator workshops this fall in Tucson, and to establishing a Sala de Libros in their community in Spring 2023. Interested mediators should be avid readers, be willing to promote a love of reading and literacy for social change and live in Tucson or southern Arizona.

"We are excited to bring the Salas de libros program to Tucson from Mexico and we are deeply committed to bringing together a diverse, intergenerational groups of people to promote literacy to engage in the transformative potential of children's literature,” says Carol Brochin, Director of the Southern Arizona Writing Project.

An information session will be held Saturday, September 24, 10 – 11:30 AM, at the Worlds of Words (University of Arizona, College of Education, 1430 E Second St, Rm 453, Tucson, AZ 85721). Applications to become a Literary Mediator are due October 3rd. Mediator workshops will be held once a month on Saturdays in October, November, December, and January on the University of Arizona campus. After attending the 4 mediator sessions, volunteers will receive a certificate, access to mobile book libraries, interactive games, writing supplies, digital materials, and strategies for building communities of readers.

For more information, please visit our website: For questions, please email or any of the project Co-Directors, Carol Brochin, Kathy Short or Leah Durán.