A column in honor of Father’s Day: Dads read to your kids

Not long ago I stumbled across an article describing Barbershop Books, an initiative that places children’s books in barbershops in the USA, in order to encourage parents, mostly fathers waiting in line for haircuts with their boys, to read to them while waiting.

Fathers take their boys for haircuts, then they sit around awaiting their turn, the time could be put to good use by reading.

Why read to kids? Because it develops their imagination, enriches their vocabulary, teaches them empathy as they identify with the characters in the story, teaches them about the world, animals, and different cultures, teaches them to listen, to concentrate … I cannot even begin to tell you how helpful it is, for your kids’ language skills and intellectual growth.

So, I decided to create a few mini libraries here, as a community project by www.wheninaruba.com, and place them in local barbershops. Why? Because on the very same day I read the Barbershop Books article, I read the local library in Oranjestad was making room for new books by selling some of their old ones.


The librarians were very helpful and filled my bags. I bought the first batch, then they threw in another batch, on the following day, on the house, when they heard about my recycling plans.

As I was walking out of the library with my just-purchased bags of books, I ran into Dick Souge of Coldwell Banker Aruba Realty, and he immediately committed his company’s support, as a generous sponsor of the mini libraries.

My friend Maike Van Paridon, a driftwood artist, decorated the boxes, and I delivered them to barbershop in Noord, Bubali, Ponton and Oranjestad.

I was warmly received everywhere.

If you have any children’s book you would like to contribute, just give me a call.  

The mini-libraries also contain the Search for Strea, a charming new children’s book written by Tina Bislick, the creative editor of www.wheninaruba.com.

We placed mini libraries in: The Barbers, Classic Homme, in Dakota; CT Barbershop, Oranjestad; Next Level Barbershop, Oranjestad; C-Jam Barbers, Oranjestad; The Final Touch, Paradera; Alex Barbershop, Oranjestad; Knipoog, Oranjestad; El Bori Barbers, Palm Beach; El Bori Barbers, Ponton and Looking Sharp, Bubali.

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June 15, 2018
Rona Coster