About this idea
Children’s books are an amazing tool for parents, teachers and therapists alike to help children find their way through changes and challenges in their lives. There are books on everything you could imagine: going to a new school, becoming an older sibling, behavioral issues, loss of a loved one. When Marisela’s youngest child started biting, she turned to her aunt, Angelita Valdez, LMSW, CAADC, RPT-S, CCS, a highly decorated and well respected play therapist, who recommended a stack of children’s books. Marisela noticed one important thing; none of the characters looked like her son. None of the books reflected their family's second language or unique perspective of growing up in a bicultural home. That’s when Marisela and Angelita decided to team up to fill the gap they recognized in children’s literature. Together, they are creating children’s books designed with Latino children and families in mind to instill hope and provide resources for parents, teachers and therapists to help navigate life’s changes and challenges.
Hispanic students make up nearly a quarter of the nation’s public school enrollment, according to an analysis of census data by the Pew Hispanic Center, and are the fastest-growing segment of the school population. However, Latino children seldom see themselves in books written for young readers and even less so in books created for life changes and behavioral issues. The goal of Libros de Esperanza is to serve the needs of these young readers and families. We aim to create greater representation in this genre of children’s literature and help parents, teachers and therapists help their children through stories, beautiful illustrations and language that are a reflection of them.
What I'll do with $5,000
Libros de Esperanza is in the process of publishing it’s first book. $5,000 would be used towards illustration, printing, listing in the Library of Congress and marketing. The additional start-up funding would also allow us to make a donation of over 100 copies to READ Muskegon, the West Michigan Hispanic Center, Muskegon and Grand Rapids Public Schools, Michigan Association for Play Therapy and libraries along the lakeshore.