The Human Library

What is the Human Library?

AIGA Nebraska and the Omaha Public Library are proud to present the Human Library­­­ — an opportunity to break through the expectations and labels we place on each other. This powerful event is designed to:
• Bring together people who wouldn’t otherwise cross paths
• Challenge prejudices and biases
• Help people form a better understanding of others

Participants will walk away with a mutual understanding of what it means to be human beyond a single perceived identity. It’s a safe space where difficult questions are expected, appreciated, and answered. Our volunteers cherish the opportunity to share their narrative with others and forge new connections.

What is a human book?

A human book is a volunteer that is willing to share their story through respectful conversation with members of the public, who borrow them.

View this our 2018 human book volunteers.

Building a stronger community through empathy

Now more than ever, empathy is extremely important, as issues of race and acceptance of others that are different than us are in the national conversation and often impacting all of us. Empathy is a powerful skill that allows us to see and appreciate another person’s perspectives – essentially helping you understand what it’s like to be in their position.

How it works

Individuals with diverse life experiences act as ‘human books’ and can be ‘checked out.’ ‘Readers’ sign up online, browse the list of human book volunteers and their stories, choose subjects they are interested in learning more about, and make reservations. Conversations are 25 minutes long and will be held in small groups of 3 to 4 people per group.

This is a time for conversation, not confrontation, so please treat the Books with care and respect.

Sign up online to reserve your conversation(s)

You can now reserve your conversation(s) with one of our human book volunteers! Sign up here and join us on Wednesday, October 17.


October 17, 2018 | 4 – 7pm
Omaha Public Library, 215 South 15th Street
• Please arrive 10 minutes prior to your scheduled time to check-in.
• Free and Open to the Public
• Free parking at Omaha Park One on 15th and Douglas streets.
• Present your parking ticket at check-in for validation.

Sign up online to reserve your conversation(s) 
Reserve your conversation(s) with one of our human book volunteers! Sign up here and join us.

You can also to our Facebook Event  page for more information.


Cathy Solarana
Diversity & Inclusion Chair, AIGA NE

Anna Wilcoxon
Diversity & Inclusion Librarian at OPL

Making a difference takes a community

With the goal of of public engagement and education through community relationships, AIGA is partnering with the Omaha Public library to make the Human Library an annual fall event.

Next spring, AIGA will join the Omaha Public Library in supporting the UNO Criss Library Human Library event on UNO’s main campus, so you’ll have 2 chances to sign up and attend!

Interested in supporting the Human Library?

The Human Library AIGA NE and OPL event is free and open to the public. However, behind the scenes, there are expenses. Contributing enables us to provide volunteers with T-shirts, to promote events with posters and flyers, to give out promotional materials at an event, and provides snacks and beverages for the volunteers. All contributions are greatly appreciated and used efficiently to bring the best events to the public. Contact our Director of Diversity, Cathy Solarana to find out how to sponsor or donate at

By AIGA Nebraska
Published June 11, 2018