The Beacon Today
Empowering Minority Groups , One Children's Book at a Time
Promoting a culturally diverse environment to empower society is a great task, but what about building such a forum of discourse for children? It started off as a love for books, but soon Pranati Kumar Skomra, also known as Pranoo, made her dream of creating a revolutionary bookstore for marginalized kids a reality.
“Rohi’s Readery is a social justice driven children’s bookstore and learning center,” Skomra said. “Committed to inclusivity and diversity ensuring we are empowering our babies through the love of literacy.”
Marginalized communities in Florida continue to suffer when it comes to education, healthcare, and economic benefits. The International Journal of Research in Social Sciences says that although every child has the right to an education without discrimination, that is not always the case.
A majority of children in the U.S are deprived and excluded from the mainstream of education leaving them less fortunate to participate in the social, cultural and intellectual affairs. The CDC expressed its greatest concern for the health of those a part of the
WIth recognizable issues in treatment for the minority groups, Skomra desired to make a change within the area, she knew best; education.
Skomra experienced racism and oppression in her early years and it led to a downfall in her spiritual and mental health. She took her story and decided to help others facing similarities feel empowered by who they are.
“I always say that teaching saved my life…” Skomra said. “This is a space to honor and celebrate historically marginalized communities… and provide windows and mirrors for our children so that they don’t have to experience some of the hardships we had to.”
Gabriela Portillo, Palm Beach Chamber of Commerce Human Resources department worker said that the readery exemplified the importance of unifying the community.
“Rohi’s Readery is providing resources to educate and bring awareness to the area which is exactly what we need…there is no better way to teach a kid than through books and actions, and the actions are giving these books that can further their knowledge,” Portillo said.
Gopal Rajegowda, senior vice president of Related Companies that owns a division of Rosemary square, donated the readery space to Skomra in efforts to support women in business and women of color in business.
The types of books held in the readery are really specific to the minority groups and historically marginalized communities. Each story has an admiration for the experiences of the people and the books include additional portrayals of people that do not characterize or stereotype the negative aspects of each group.
The revolutionary readery holds events, educational programs, and public discourse forums for both parents and children. The goal is to target subjects like racism, discrimination, and oppression and create a safe space for learning and addressing them.
“The readery is not mine, it is built on the strength and courage of our ancestors and descendants,” Skomra said.
With big dreams ahead, she fights every day to make a difference in the lives of kids, families, and marginalized communities… one children’s book at a time.
By. Daniella Parra