During this global pandemic, many of us have additional time to reflect. We are reminded how little control we have over what happens in our world. And we are also reminded that despite this harsh reality, we retain the ability to choose our response. One of the most impactful books I ever read, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor Frankl, highlights that people’s ultimate freedom lies in this ability.
Last month, we shared our OHBD 2020 goals and they remain unchanged, however our ability to meet them is challenged unless we make immediate adjustments. Most of our ongoing funding comes from in-person efforts like community dinners, festivals, and events, as well as book sales through Amazon, to libraries and schools, and to those traveling to Ethiopia. We cannot conduct live events for the foreseeable future. Libraries and schools are closed. Travel is limited plus many folks don’t have the available resources for optional purchases such as books.
Nevertheless, we have the unique and precious opportunity to be of service and identify new opportunities -- if we are open to both. So, we at OHBD choose to be a part of the solution during these challenging times. Our team has come up with ideas to help parents who are home schooling and collect additional art for future #ReadySetGo books.
Please join us by sharing with your networks, and let us know if you can identify any other opportunities:
1. $1.99 for ALL Kindle titles: We’ve dropped the cost of our Kindle books available (over 89 unique titles; more published each month) to the lowest price possible, per Amazon, $1.99 each (previously $6.99 and $7.99). Our 3-in-1 compilations are $2.99 (effectively .99 per title; previously $9.99). We will still offer our usual FREE Kindle books each Friday/Saturday and in a new promotion, we will now discount the print version of the same title by 30%.
2. First RSG Art Contest: Fun for kids of all ages, this is an opportunity to learn about Ethiopia, create art for our RSG books, and help home schooling parents. Our first annual art contest is now in progess.
3. FREE Coloring and Activity Pages: We've produced FREE coloring and activity sheets featuring illustrations from our RSG books to download and print at home. Download each file individually by opening and saving it to your computer or all of them in a .zip file by clicking the Download button in the upper right hand corner. We recommend using your computer’s native zip opening application.
4. At-home STEM training: We're sharing some of the ReadySetGo STEM teaching manuals we have in progress via social media. Conducting the experiments at home is another way to enhance learning.
We are also hearing about great things being done with our books and are happy to support similar efforts:
1. Schools creating RSG reading videos: Monarch Academy, which created The Busy Little Bee with us is planning to record people reading our books and share within the district.
2. OneVibe / RSG reading videos: Simon Okelo, founder of OneVibe Africa, is creating a YouTube channel with videos of himself reading some of our books to share with his followers.We will also share once available.
3. Habesha mothers reading time: Habesha Mamas, the largest global network of mothers who identify as Habesha, did three weeks of daily reading time, sponsored by Almaz + Co. Leyla and I read some RSG books as part of that effort. We are considering whether OHBD could support a twice-a-week effort going forward.
4. Supporters and illustrators reading videos: Gina DeCruz, an illustrator of a few of our books, is reading them to her students and sharing via YouTube videos; others have also volunteered to do the same.
We appreciate the generous support of our global community and wish everyone well as we all adjust to a new normal. We will get through this together.