AwareNow: Issue 28: The Mental Edition

Page 129

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH JELANI MEMORY

MADE TO EMPOWER

A CONVERSATION ABOUT ‘A KIDS COMPANY ABOUT’ A book series, a newspaper, a podcast and an app designed to empower kids, A Kids Company About is creating content to spark important conversations. Built to tell stories that feature diverse voices on topics that matter to kids, A Kids Company About was founded in 2018 by Jelani Memory. His idea that started with a single book for his kids has become an entire media company for all kids (and adults). ALLIÉ: It began with a book. Jelani, please share the story behind the story you wrote back in 2018 entitled ‘A Kids Book About Racism’.

JELANI: I like to say it was sort of an accident. I've been writing for a really long time. I've always thought about publishing a book, but this was not one of those projects. This was a thing that I wanted to do for my kids. I wanted to make a story for them so they could know me better and also know themselves better and navigate the world in a more empathetic way. So, in the summer of 2018, which sounds like a million years ago, I wrote a kid's book about racism for my six kids. I had five (four step kids and one biological) and one new one on the way was going to be born in about a month at that time. I wanted my kids to be able to navigate race in a really thoughtful way.

So, I spent all of one week writing the book and another week designing it. I didn't bother to print more than one copy or even really go through the process of spell checking it. It was just a really fun project that I was really excited about

MADE TO EMPOWER EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH JELANI MEMORY

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129 AWARENOW / THE MENTAL EDITION

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