Nowadays we meet more people online than in person. Some people are just a number on our social media, while some of them can make a huge difference in our lives, even if we never meet them in person.
My mission is to make a difference in children's lives. And if you are reading this blog post you might be an adult who wants the best for your little one.
My first children's book "Olly, the Lone Red Squirrel" is about bullying where the main character Olly is rejected for having a different fur color.
It was written to help children understand what it's like to be bullied and how we can be happier if we treat others with kindness and friendship.
My concern about bullying was built into me for many years. Starting when I was a kid and was bullied at school. I was super shy and smart. I always got the best grades in school and was loved by all the teachers.
Yeah, that was enough for a girl to kick a ball in my face during physical education and laugh while I couldn't breathe. And a boy, older than me, who told me between classes that he was going to beat me outside of the school, for no reason.
At that time I didn't even know why these kids hated me so much!
Like I said, I was shy and didn't talk much. I never hurt anyone.
In this situation where I was threatened, I had to ask a cousin of mine to go to school with me the next day, because I was afraid of what could happen to me.
How many children are afraid to go to school?
" It is estimated that 160,000 children miss school every day due to fear of attack or intimidation by other students. Source: National Education Association." https://www.nveee.org/statistics
All my life I've been watching the news about bullying. I bet you've watched on TV, at least once, a child in the US going to school with a gun looking for revenge because he/she was bullied. How many children had their lives taken because of bullying?
"87% of students said shootings are motivated by a desire to 'get back at those who have hurt them'." https://www.nveee.org/statistics
I have been living in Japan since 2019 and I was shocked to learn that many children committed suicide and some of the possible reasons why they did this is bullying at school.
Who Am I?
I'm Larissa Soares. I'm from Brazil (Rio de Janeiro), but I've been living in Japan (Tokyo) since 2019.
In Brazil, I was Air Traffic Controller ( Sergeant of the Brazilian Air Force) for 6 years, serving my country and millions of passengers on flights within Brazil.
I also studied Architecture and Urbanism at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro - UFRJ.
My mission is to inspire children around the world to be kind and friendly to others. Sharing with them important messages written and illustrated in a sensitive way. Stories to be read and reflected upon.
And I need your help in this mission!
If you are also concerned about bullying and want to do something about it, welcome to my team!
You can start with a simple step of purchasing my first book here:
Read it to your child and take advantage of this moment to talk about the book with him/her. Ask if they saw anything like this at school? Ask what would they do if they witnessed this situation? What should they do if they are bullied at school?
Share your results with me so I know if I'm being assertive in my mission. It will help me produce even better books for children.
If you want to do more, please help me spreading the word about this book to everyone you know, especially your friends who have children. Let's all help each other so we can build a better world together!
Please feel free to contact me. It will be a pleasure to meet you.
"Step by step I climb the ladder of my dreams." - Larissa Soares