A Journey of Hope
By Jenna Bush
Based on her work with Unicef
Harper Collins Publisher
I love buying books where a portion of the proceeds go to help a charitable organization! I especially like it when that charitable organization is Unicef. I’ve been helping to raise money for Unicef since I was a very little girl. In Catholic school, we used to go around collecting money in little milk cartons. We’d then send that money into Unicef so that they could help to feed the poor and hungry in third world countries.
Here’s the description from the book:
“She’s 17. She’s been abused. She has a child. And she’s HIV positive. She is Ana, and this is her story. It begins the day she is born infected with HIV, transmitted from her young mother. Now, she barely remembers her mama, who died when Ana was only 3. From then on, Ana’s childhood becomes a blur of faint memories and secrets – secrets about her illness and about the abuse she endures.
Ana’s journey is a long one. Shuffled from home to home, she rarely finds safety or love. And then she meets a boy. Berto is one of the only people Ana trusts with all her secrets. That trust puts Ana on a path to breaking the silence that has harmed her and leads her to new beginnings, new sorrows, and new hope.
Jenna Bush has written a powerful narrative nonfiction account of a girl who struggles to break free from a vicious cycle of abuse, poverty, and illness. Based on Jenna’s work with UNICEF and inspired by the framework of one girls life, it is also the story of many children around the world who are marginalized and excluded from basic care, support, and education. Resources at the back of the book share how you can make a difference to children in need and how you can protect yourself and others”
I didn’t realize I was buying a book written for teens! lol BUT I’m glad I did. Yes, it was a little simple but simple is good. I read this one in 2 bath tub sessions:-) What I LOVED about Ana’s Story was that it flowed easily and it was written well. I found myself wanting to know more about Ana at the end of the book. It ends kind of abruptly but Ana’s story had to end somewhere. It was a TRUE story and she’s still alive. I wonder how Ana is doing now?
This book reminded me of Half The SKY by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. I absolutely LOVE the idea of helping to empower and educate girls and women in poorer countries. It’s my dream to be able to go to Latin America or India and help in the schools. Or do ANYTHING that brings hope. Jenna Bush impressed me with her compassion and her willingness to “get her hands dirty” by helping Aids patients through her work with UNICEF. As mentioned in the description, Jenna gives websites and even phone numbers for numerous charitable organizations. She also gives suggestions for what a teenager or an adult can do to help raise money to help several organizations. She gives ideas for what students can do to protect themselves against the spread of Aids/HIV and ideas on how to stop bullying.
I think this one will be on Julia’s reading list soon 😉