October marks Black history Month in the UK, a celebration of Black culture and the contribution of black people to literatre, music, sport, politics and so much more. While I don’t believe that these great accomplishments should be confined to October, I think it’s a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the Black diaspora.
Growing up in the 1980s, I remember being excited when I saw another person who looked like me on television. I remember calling my mum into the living room to look at someone who was not Trevor McDonald! If you’re 30+ I’m sure you can relate. Black faces were certainly few and far between on television and before you mention The Cosby show and Different Strokes, I am referring to British black actors and presenters. History at school was confined to European history and Black History or even Black History Month was never discussed.
As a mum of two I am glad to see that things are changing ( and yes there’s still room for improvement) and there are now books on black history and children’s black literatire which are more widely accessible. It is refreshing to know that great Black figures are discussed at many schools and young children are already familiar with names such as Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King and Bejamin Zephaniah.
Some of my favourite children’s books hail from the series Little People, Big Dreams which are great for celebrating famous women such as Coco Chanel, Marie Curie and also black historical women including Maya Angelou and most recently Rosa Parks.
Civil Rights Activist Rosa Parks’ story is one of the most recent books in the series. These beautiful children’s books are a great introduction to some of the world’s most inspirational women. I look forward to new additions in the series and my daughter discovering some more great women who believed in their dreams.
The Little People, Big Dreams series is available online and also at Liberty’s London Liberty London