Read-a-Rama, a Seattle-based children’s literacy program, will feature Dominican author, Jamie Alleyne, during a virtual storytime on Thursday, June 25, 2020.
In celebration of National Caribbean American Heritage Month, Alleyne will read her debut picture book Why are Onions So Sad to children across the United States and the Caribbean.
Released earlier this year, Why are Onions So Sad is a whimsical tale about little onions, life lessons and the puzzling reason why they make us cry.
Alleyne’s Onions come to life with pencil illustrations by Ray Francis and a layout designed by Damien Bellot.
“We’re happy to showcase Jamie during our storytime,” said Read-a-Rama cofounder Rachelle Washington, educator and literacy activist. “Our goal is to strive to make the US and global places we touch, more literate, one child and one book at a time. Since we know how important it is for all children to be able to see themselves in books and media, we promote the work of authors of color as much as possible.”
The Dominican Health and Education Initiative (DAHEI), shares a common vision and is inviting and supporting student participation throughout Dominica and the Caribbean to the virtual storytime that will be broadcast via Zoom.
DAHEI will purchase and donate 100 copies of Alleyne’s books. Children at the Bright Beginning Center, a preschool in Dominica, and select preschools across the region and US will receive a copy of Alleyne’s book to take home.
In addition, Read-a-Rama will donate books by Black authors to the preschool’s library collection.
“This partnership serves as a bridge between Dominica and the United States,” adds Read-a-Rama cofounder Michelle Martin, the Beverly Cleary Professor for Children and Youth Services at the University of Washington. “Collectively, our goal is to inspire children to read and love books.”
About Jamie Alleyne
Jamie Alleyne is a native of Dominica who lives between St. Lucia and Dominica, primarily. Jamie’s love of island-storytelling enriches understanding of the magic that is Dominica. As a behavior analyst and investment migration specialist, Jamie uses her background to create tourism sites, welcome visitors and investors to the Caribbean. Onions is her first book and represents an appreciation of Jamie’s contribution to lore and homemade love.
Founded more than a decade ago, Read-a-Rama is a 501(c)(3) that uses children’s and young adult books to engage students to read and live books. Through collaborations with schools, libraries, universities, government and social service agencies, civic and religious organizations Read-a-Rama programs include storytimes, summer camps, and workshops for educators and librarians.
Contact Information: Read-a-Rama.org
About Dominican Health and Education Initiative
Founded by Dominican nationals, Ann-Marie La Ronde-Richard, Ph.D., and Farrah La Ronde-Hutchison, Environmental Scientist, the Dominican Health and Education Initiative seeks to elevate the health and education standards on the island of Dominica by improving medical training and technology and ensuring that every child has the opportunity to obtain an education.
For more information on DAHEI, visit www.dahei.org