04 Feb / Our Grandparents: A Global Album by Maya Ajmera, Sheila Kinkade, Cynthia Pon, foreword by Archbishop Desmond Tutu
This heartwarming title begins with all the different ways to say “Grandfather” and “Grandmother” throughout the world, with an assortment of caring pictures to illustrate that special multi-generational bond. Then the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu steps in with wise words of loving wisdom: “Grandchildren are a wonderful gift. They allow us to see the world, once again, through the eyes of a child. … Their joyful innocent awakes the child in us and gives us hope for the future.” He also offers gentle reminders: “As grandparents we also bear important responsibilities. … If we do our job well, our grandchildren will grow to have open minds and open hearts. … The love and support we give our grandchildren helps safeguard their future – and makes the world a better place.” Oh, if only if were that easy …
A co-production of the Global Fund for Children, the three authors honor grandparents throughout the world, offering a book-end spread of “Five Things to Do with Your Grandparents” to strengthen bonds. Also included is a map of the world, with the represented countries colored in … images originating from Africa, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Middle East, and Southeast Asia are disappointingly sparse. A bit more diversity would certainly have found greater appreciation.
That said, with all the racially-divided hardships and historical challenges Americans have faced (and continue to face), only in America (at least amidst these images) can you find a picture of a Caucasian grandmother holding her clearly mixed African American granddaughter. As the parents of young hapa children, that certainly spoke to me as a welcoming sign of making the world a better place … truly the future is with our children.
Readers: Children (and their grandparents!)