One month after the Presidential inauguration last year, seven NYC girls set out to show the world that girls can be anything! They posed for photos for “Rad Girl Revolution”, an upcoming children’s book that aims to empower young girls and encourage gender equal mindsets in young boys. The Presidential Cabinet photoshoot took place at the mini-Oval Office replica at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan. The girls re-created viral photos of President Trump signing an executive order surrounded by all men, re-imagining a future where gender and race will no longer be seen as an obstacle for serving in the White House. “Obama broke one barrier. It is time for a woman to break the next barrier,” said Paul Hellman, father of 5-year old Maddy, who posed as one of the Presidential cabinet members.
Created by two NYC moms, “Rad Girl Revolution” fills a gap in the girl empowerment book market. “Although there are many inspiring children’s books about women trailblazers in history, we wanted a book that allows young girls to picture themselves becoming the inspiring women of the future!” said Sharita Manickam, author of “Rad Girl Revolution” and mother to two girls.
“Around the time of the election, we saw so many little girls excited at the possibility of a female President. When we saw that hope falter, we knew we had to find a way to keep the power of possibility alive,” said Jen Bruno, photo-illutrator for “Rad Girl Revolution”.
RAD stands for Rise Above Doubt and Reach Any Dream. The book will feature 30 inspiring storybook-style photos of real little girls in fields typically under-represented by women, along with a rhyming verse describing each career. “We used rhymes because we want our book to appeal to a young audience. Gender stereotypes are set in children as early as age 6, so it is crucial to reach them during the critical developmental ages of 3-7,” said Manickam.
“We are showing young girls career opportunities they may not otherwise know exist, and we believe photos of real girls help further drive home the reality. We don’t want our message getting muddled in the fantasy of typical picture book illustrations,” explained Bruno. “We also made it a point to cast diverse models as we want every little girl who picks up our book to see themselves represented in the pages.”
Other occupations in the book include Scientist, Judge, Artist, Astronaut, Doctor, Pilot, Journalist, Director, Chef, Author, CEO, Engineer, and Paleontologist.
“We are encouraged by the increased momentum toward gender equality, and feel that putting these images and rhymes in front of today’s youth can help better level the playing field from the start,” stated Manickam.
More info: radgirlrevolution.com
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