MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The world’s first Little Free Library popped up in western Wisconsin over a decade ago. Now, the organization is being honored for its contributions to global literacy.

The Little Free Library Foundation announced this week that it’s received the 2020 World Literacy Award, a prize given out by the World Literacy Foundation.

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“It is an honor to be recognized by the World Literacy Foundation for Little Free Library’s work in expanding book access,” said Greig Metzger, Little Free Library’s executive director, in a statement.

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Leaders in the World Literary Foundation noted that Little Free Library’s work to foster a global community of readers is especially important amid the COVID-19 pandemic, as students around the world are not attending in-person classes, a situation that harms disadvantaged students in particular.

The Little Free Library Foundation says more than 100,000 of its inspired book-sharing boxes can be found around the world, in more than 100 countries.

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The first Little Free Library was built by Todd Bol in Hudson, Wisconsin, in 2009. Bol died in 2018 following a battle with pancreatic cancer.