6 books to inspire young readers to be activists

6 books to inspire young readers to be activists


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We love celebrating the importance of books in helping kids learn about the world around us. So here’s a collection of six great children’s books about some of the issues that we care about, like global health and caring for those affected by poverty. Hopefully, they inspire a few young readers to turn into young activists.


Little Feet, Big Steps by Brit Sharon

Little Feet, Big Steps is a coming of age story about a young girl who, with the help of her encouraging mother, takes on a project by signing up for the AIDS Walk in her city. She turns to her community to fundraise and is unstoppable on her journey to make a difference. Throughout the story, Gabby comes to terms with what AIDS is and why people come together to support causes that effect others. (See the rest of the review here)


Little Things Make Big Differences: A Story About Malaria by John Nunes and Monique Nunes

Little Things Make Big Differences is a story about Rehema, a young girl who lives in the African country of Tanzania. When she was a baby, Rehema was infected with malaria, but because her parents were able to get treatment for her, she survived. In the book, Rehema describes what children in the United States can do to help fight malaria. (See the rest of the review here)


Ithemba Means Hope by Gcina Mhlophe

In Ithemba Means Hope, Ithemba becomes more hopeful for his own parents with HIV when he commits to help his neighbor and best friend remember to take her ARVs regularly. The book models positive attitudes toward HIV/AIDS and commitment to making ARVs work. (See the rest of the review here)





Rachel and the Lion by Stephanie Lainez

An excellent tool for parents, this book helps to create a platform in which to discuss pressing life issues, such as sickness, death, honesty and respect. Rachel is a 7-year-old girl in a small town in Africa that is struck by malaria. As tragedy hits her household, her special relationship with the Lion helps her cope and find inner strength through understanding grief, conflict, and truth. (See the rest of the review here)


Brenda Has a Dragon in her Blood by Hiltje Vink

This true story of a little girl from Africa, written by her adoptive mother Hijltje Vink, deals with the day to day social and emotional challenges of a child and family living with HIV. Through Brenda’s story, children learn they are not alone living with HIV/Aids. The book addresses the stigma of living with HIV and the importance of the ARV medication regime to “keep the dragon sleeping” and remain healthy. (See the rest of the review here)

What Does It Mean To Be Global

What Does It Mean To Be Global by Rana DiOrio 

In this whimsically drawn and thoughtfully told story, children learn what it means to be global by visiting the pyramids, eating sushi, celebrating Kwanzaa, and learning how to say “hello” in Swahili. The book is a conversation starter for parents and educators to teach children about the goodness in exploring, appreciating, and respecting other children’s traditions, religions, and values the world over.

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