GM Inclusive Lives Matters - Living Library Programme

Greater Manchester 






The Greater Manchester Inclusive Lives Matters Programme aims to build the cultural competency and awareness of colleagues working in the Public & Third sector across the Region. It forms part of a much larger piece of work aimed at delivering on the pledges made by senior leaders across GM to prioritise the reduction of workforce race inequalities over the next few years.

The programme aims to harness the diverse and powerful intersectional experiences of Staff from Black, Asian & Minority Ethnicity backgrounds through the power of story telling and intentional conversations.

Stories will be told and heard through the concept of a regional living library. The library will be filled with a diverse range of “human books” and people will be able to access and learn through a number of face to face events, booking a session with a e-human book online or by listening to a catalogue of human audio book stories.

 Inspiring Change Together

What Is a Living Library?

The way a library works is adopted to promote respectful conversations between the ‘books’ and ‘readers’ who take them out on loan for a short positive conversation. The Living Library is an equalities movement that challenges prejudice and discrimination through the sharing of lived experience. Just like in a real library, a visitor to the Living Library can choose from a range of titles. The difference is that the Books are people, and reading is a conversation.

A conversation at the Living Library will be an interactive experience that engages two people – a Human Book and a library visitor. Human Books share life experience that can challenge prejudice towards issues such as ethnicity, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion/belief, lifestyle, or other aspects which they feel leads to prejudice, stigma or discrimination.

Could You Be Our Next Human Book?

We are looking for members of the BAME community who interested in having colleagues from across the Public & Third Sector come hear their stories and experiences.

We are particularly interested to hear from BAME community members who are also:

  • LGBT
  • Disabled
  • Underserved faith community (Jewish, Sikh or Muslim etc)
  • Carer
  • Care Leaver
  • In a senior leadership role
  • Unemployed
  • In roles with few visible BAME colleagues
  • Have faced discrimination or barriers at work

All Human books will be provided with a free development session to support them in shaping their story and for individuals not employed by the Public Sector there will be reasonable travel expenses available when attending face to face events.


To apply to be a human book please complete the following application form here.

To apply to attend the launch event at the People’s History museum on the 15th October 2019 please click here.

We will be continuing to recruit new Human Books throughout the year and hope to leave the application process open continuously to support our growing regional library.

What’s The Aim?

The aim of the programme is to bring people together who might not otherwise meet in a safe and supportive environment. The programme will give people from BAME communities a chance to share real lived experiences with colleagues and leaders across the Public Sector, which we hope will have a positive impact on improving awareness of issues impacting on diverse communities and start to break down barriers that currently exist across our workplaces.

How Do I Access A Human Book?

We will be advertising four living library events throughout 2020 located across the Greater Manchester Region. At these events you will have the opportunity to meet and talk with a number of our human books and hear their stories through the power of positive conversation and engagement. Events will be advertised on this webpage and targeted marketing will be shared with each Public Sector Organisation to cascade across the region.

During 2020 we hope to launch a new Greater Manchester Inclusion Hub Website. As part of this web portal we will be developing the opportunity for Public & Third Sector staff to book an appointment to make a skype call with one of our “human e-books” and the ability to listen online to pre-recorded “human audio books”. The new web portal will be advertised via this page and via marketing cascaded to all Public Sector Organisations across the region.

Contact us

Tel: 0161 604 5893