Aija Mayrock was bullied for much of her childhood. She knew she wasn't alone in experiencing humiliating, violent, and emotionally turbulent acts of harassment, but she didn't know what she could do to help other kids. One day, however, it became clear: She'd write a book.
"I made a commitment to myself that I was going to write this book and do everything I could to get it into kids’ hands," she tells Bustle.
As the Director of the Youth Free Expression Program at the National Coalition Against Censorship, Abena Hutchful shows up to work each day prepared to fight against the censorship of books and other media, specifically books and media aimed at kids. "The purpose of this is to amplify the voices of young people, to teach students about their rights under the First Amendment and what they are entitled to in school, so that they can defend themselves," she tells Bustle.
Winona Guo & Priya Vulchi
Winona Guo and Priya Vulchi were sophomores in high school when they realized something about their school's curriculum: There just wasn't a good resource to facilitate honest, frank, and intellectually rigorous discussions about race. So, they decided to write a textbook on racial literacy, drawing on stories from people of color throughout their town. "Race had a played in our lives from childhood," Guo tells Bustle. "But we had never had the words to even have a conversation about it."