Read Woke Challenge


Welcome! The Read Woke challenge runs from October 4, 2021 through April 1, 2022 for All Ages – Kids, Teens, & Adults.

The Challenge

The Read Woke movement was created by Cicely Lewis, award winning librarian, teacher, and writer. Read Woke is about learning about people, cultures, and social issues that may be outside of your own experience. It’s also about learning more about social injustices that you may face in your own life. Gain new knowledge, build empathy, and empower yourself.

Join the challenge to read outstanding books by diverse authors and enter for a chance to win prizes.

How to Get Started

For those under 13, parents can sign up kids for the Read Woke Challenge through Beanstack, a website and app that you can use to track your reading!

Multiple participants can log their progress under one Beanstack account (e.g. parents and their children). View our Beanstack Tutorial for details.  

Sign in here to join and log your progress.

If you are not able to participate online, drop by your local library branch to pick-up a paper version to join in the fun.

Please Note:

  • You must have a valid ORL card to participate. Don't have a card? Sign up for one online or at your local library branch!
  • This challenge can only be completed once per person.


Finding Books

Check out the Read Woke ORL booklists for lists for each badge category.


What’s a woke book?

  • Challenges a social norm
  • Seeks to challenge the status quo
  • Gives voice to the voiceless
  • Provides information about a group that has been disenfranchised
  • Has a protagonist from an underrepresented or oppressed group

Find more books using these resources

Diverse Book Finder

Antiracist Resources and Reads: Lists for All Ages 

CCBC Social Justice & Diversity Book Bank

49th Shelf


Prizes for the Read Woke Challenge showing a T-Shirt, Swag, and Books


Book Draw

Enter for a chance to win a book from the reading lists. We have books for all ages.

Read Woke Swag

Enter for a chance to win a tote bag with some swag inside like stickers, notebooks, and buttons.

Read Woke T-Shirt

Enter for a chance to win a T-Shirt.


Events for Kids & Families


Virtual Read Woke Story Times

Family story times that feature picture books by authors of colour and that celebrate diverse cultures. Each story time corresponds to the Read Woke reading lists.

Eastern Voices

Register Online | Monday, October 4 | 3:15 to 3:45 PM PT

A celebration of Asian authors. Experience picture books featuring characters and traditions with Asian or Middle Eastern heritage.


Black Voices

Register Online | Monday, October 18 | 3:15 to 3:45 PM PT

Family time celebrating Black authors. The picture books will feature Black characters. Representation matters.


Latinx Voices

Register Online | Monday, October 25 | 3:15 to 3:45 PM PT

A family event emphasizing Hispanic authors. Picture books will celebrate characters and traditions of Hispanic heritage.


Indigenous Voices

Register Online | Monday, November 1 | 3:15 to 3:45 PM PT

Family storytelling through picture books from Indigenous authors. Enjoy an emphasis on Indigenous characters and culture.


Women's Voices

Register Online | Monday, November 8 | 3:15 to 3:45 PM PT

Experience picture books by female authors as a family. Celebrate strong female characters as role models.


Diverse Ability Voices

Register Online | Monday, November 15 | 3:15 to 3:45 PM PT

Stories for families featuring characters with diverse abilities. Picture books with positive outlooks on the potential to succeed with disabilities.



Virtual Tough Topics Story Times Families

Join a librarian and local community agencies such as Clinical Counselling Service, Vernon District Immigrant and Community Services Society, and BGC Okanagan Achiever’s Program to explore tough topics through picture books and discussion.

Feeling Like You Stand Out

Register Online | Saturday, October 16 | 2:30 to 3:30 PM PT

Fear of racism, prejudice and language barriers will be explored through picture books. Engaging storytelling with a librarian followed by support from Vernon and District Immigrant and Community Services Society. A great way to start the discussion with your family.


Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

Register Online | Tuesday, October 26 | 6:30 to 7:30 PM PT

Looking for a way to introduce gender identity or orientation to your child? Picture books featuring LGBTQ+ characters will be shared by a librarian. BGC Okanagan Achiever’s Program staff will lead a discussion after the stories. This is an inclusive and supportive environment for LGBTQ+ families.


Serious Illness

Register Online | Wednesday, November 17 | 6:30 to 7:30 PM PT

Picture books about facing illness of a loved one read by a children's librarian. Followed by a discussion lead by Stacey Creak, MSW, RSW. In partnership with BGC Okanagan's Family Navigator.  


Read Woke is a movement.  It is a feeling.  It is a style.  It is a form of education. It is a call to action;  it is our right as lifelong learners.  It means arming yourself with knowledge in order to better protect your rights.  Knowledge is power and no one can take it away. It means learning about others so that you can treat people with the respect and dignity that they deserve no matter their religion, race, creed, or color.

– Cicely Lewis, founder of Read Woke