Advocating for a Well-Read Public

“Books permit us to voyage through time, to tap the wisdom of our ancestors. The library connects us with the insight and knowledge, painfully extracted from Nature, of the greatest minds that ever were, with the best teachers, drawn from the entire planet and from all our history, to instruct us without tiring, and to inspire us to make our own contribution to the collective knowledge of the human species. I think the health of our civilization, the depth of our awareness about the underpinnings of our culture and our concern for the future can all be tested by how well we support our libraries." — Carl Sagan

Our History

The Helping Friendly Book Club was formed in Dallas in  2013 when a curious group of friends got together and decided searching for the Secrets of Eternal Joy and Never Ending Splendor was a noble pursuit.

In 2014 the idea to create ‘SEJ Talks’ and Helping Friendly Book Places to engage with a larger audience emerged out of the Helping Friendly Book Club’s Quest for SEJNES.  

In 2015, the community’s overwhelmingly positive response to ‘SEJ Talks’ and the first Helping Friendly little Free Library led to the decision to form The Helping Friendly Foundation as a 501c3.  

What is the hff?

The Helping Friendly Foundation is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization devoted to raising money to support the Helping Friendly Initiatives.  Literacy is a pathway to Knowledge and Curiosity is the active ingredient. 

By Illuminating curiosity for the purpose of forward motion around literacy, knowledge, and the Secrets to Eternal Joy, we aim to activate conscious, connected communities, thus elevating cultural vitality and social well being.  

The Helping Friendly Foundation exists to inspire curiosity and activate culture around broad literacy and discourse, and through events and libraries that bring these things to life for the community. The Helping Friendly Foundation is that which is greater than the sum of all its parts, and we need your financial support.

Who is the HFF?

Cole Suttle - President and Founder -

Brian Adams - Treasurer -

Michael Bailey - Brand Director -

Danielle Thornton - Membership Director -

Alex Gillan - Director of Development -

Philomena Jones - Education and Outreach -


  • Illuminate Curiosity for the Purpose of Forward Motion.
  • Create Space and Stimulation for the Generation of Insights.  
  • Support Conscious Connected Community Building.
  • Elevate Social Vitality through Literacy, Art and Conversation.
  • Earn our reputation as a trusted friend and resource.
  • Build a ‘Coalition of the Curious’ and grow it into a force multiplier for Helping Friendly Initiatives.
  • Be a Carrier Wave for the Wisdom of the Ages


We recognize the universal truth that relationships and communities are created through shared experiences, and valuable shared experiences create valuable relationships and communities.  The Helping Friendly Foundation is devoted to creating space and stimulation for those experiences to occur.


  • Elevate the Free Public Book Exchange Movement to the level of an art form by raising money to commission artists and architects to design and build unique Helping Friendly Book Stands and Places, install them in choice locations, and steward them with curated books that enliven the soul.
  • Host “SEJ (Secret of Eternal Joy) Talks” annually to create an engaging experience for the community to cross-pollinate ideas and raise money for Helping Friendly Libraries and Helping Friendly Collaborative Projects.
  • Creatively collaborate with like-minded individuals and organizations to grow and support Dallas’ burgeoning Intellectual Movement.


Ideal and Purpose

In the age of the “smart phone” people seem to be dumbing down and becoming more easily manipulated at a rapid clip, a trend we would like to see reversed.  How can we accomplish this daunting task?

Remember how you felt the first time you read a book that changed your life?  Remember the sense of magic, the sense of wonder, the sense of possibility?  We want to bring that “mystique” back to reading and back to everyday life.

We want to commission artists and designers to create stunning, one-of-a-kind urban art installations for books and elevate the free public book exchange (Little Free Library) movement to the level of an art form.  

By turning Helping Friendly Book Stands into pieces of art and partnering with local businesses and city organizations to place them in choice locations, we see The Helping Friendly Libraries as a physical embodiment of our invisible ideals that can serve as beacons in the community and jumping off points for sharing knowledge, exchanging ideas and generating insights.

The HF Libraries are interactive, engaging community touch points that allow people to share the experience of their favorite books with others in their community.

On a very basic level what we are trying to do is make reading “cool” again because values create behavior.  If we want people to change their behavior patterns to read more, we need to make them think reading is cool again.

The Helping Friendly Libraries create opportunities for discovery and surprise and delight in everyday life.

We want to build a network of free libraries and pump them full of books that enliven the soul.

A related goal is to create processes and methods to easily enable individuals and groups to publish pamphlets and chapbooks at the local level, therefore making the sharing of free expression accessible.


Ideal and Purpose

Community is formed through shared experiences.  When culture is lacking, those shared experiences are lacking, and the vibrancy and richness of the community suffers.  The purpose of the HF Libraries and SEJ Talks is to provide valuable experiences that can be shared (such as reading the same book or listening to the same SEJ Talk) so we can build a community of more lasting value together.

We see that the groundswell of an intellectual movement in Dallas has already begun, and The Helping Friendly Foundation wants to help bolster and nourish that forward motion through creative collaborations.  

Insights are often formed in the midst of exchanging ideas.  We fully expect all sorts of great ideas to bubble up to the surface during SEJ Talks as a result of the intermingling of great minds.  We want to build the capacity to be responsive to those new insights into the growth structure of our organization.

The Helping Friendly Family sees the groundswell of an intellectual movement has already begun in Dallas, and we want to help.  Our intention is to recontextualize the way people think about reading and make Intellectual Discourse a vital part of everyday life again.  

Legend has it that a long time ago in a land far, far away, a book was written that contained within it all the inherent Knowledge of the Universe.  That book was called The Helping Friendly Book and it possessed the ancient Secrets of Eternal Joy and Never Ending Splendor (#SEJNES).  Unfortunately, The Book was stolen centuries ago and its secrets were used to enslave the people.  This, in turn, ushered in a dark age ruled by the tyranny of the dull mind, where we find ourselves today.  Recently, however, a revolution has begun to rage, rage against the tyranny of the dull mind…


The Helping Friendly Foundation is the natural next step in a process of evolution that has been unfolding in response to positive stimulus from the universe for over three years now.


Donations go to building more Book Places and the mission of spreading the word.