#HFGather: How Stories Can Create Impact and Empowerment for Kids

Jul 29, 2021 | Essential Conversations, HFGather

At our latest virtual #HFGather, we had a great conversation about impact and empowerment for kids. Our friends at the Rise-Home Stories Project shared about how they used a community-based approach to bring a story together.

We welcomed moderator Luisa Dantas (Rise-Home Stories) and panelists Jisu Kim (Feminist Press), Letitia Hernández (author), Rob Liu-Trujillo (illustrator), Mike Leyba (City Life/Vita Urbana), Julia Steele Allen (Rise Home) and Anna Lee (Working Films). The panelists were the creative team behind the book Alejandria Fights Back!/¡La lucha de Alejandria!. In the story, Alejandria brings her community together to fight eviction and save the neighborhood.

They gave us a fascinating look at how activists came up with the bones of a story to meet a particular need, and then worked in partnership with the author, illustrator, and a mission-driven publisher to bring this educational resource to life. The panelists chatted about:

  • What anti-displacement organizing looks like in the real world.
  • How kids are organizing and taking action right alongside their parents.
  • Full representation: how important it is to be writing and drawing black and brown characters.
  • Trying to create a story that shows a young person with agency.
  • How it’s important to create new, non-confining narratives for kids, because narratives inform how we understand the world.

You can watch the #HFGather recording below.
Please note: we have added closed captions to the video below; if you don’t see them, hover over the bottom of the video and choose the “CC” icon.

Find out more about the book here. An educator’s guide and a community guide are in the works.

Find out more about author Letitia Hernández
Find out more about illustrator Rob Liu-Trujillo
Find out more about The Feminist Press
Find out more about the Rise-Home Stories Project
Rise-Home Stories is an organization dedicated to crafting a visionary, shared narrative framework; building collective power through creative process; and centering the voices of frontline/impacted communities as creators and protagonists.
Alejandria Fights Back!/¡La lucha de Alejandria!

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The Highlights Foundation positively impacts children by amplifying the voices of storytellers who inform, educate, and inspire children to become their best selves.  Learn more about our impact.