St. Louis Black Authors Believe Project: Making History as they launch the pilot episode of their literacy-based TV Show
by Dr. Sam Bommarito
I’ve written before about the Believe project LINK TO BLOG. Stories about the project have appeared on a number of local TV stations in St. Louis LINK TO NEWS COVERAGE. With the help of grants from the Salvation Army, the Nine Network of Public TV in St. Louis, the Scholastic Book Club and other sponsors St. Louis Black Authors have set up four reading rooms in the St. Louis region, with plans in the works to set up even more. Each room is stocked with “stories written for you and me,” which include books written by the members of the St. Louis Black Authors Association. Murals by local black artists decorate the rooms. The décor is inviting and informal, with comfortable chairs. They are safe havens where children can come to read and immerse themselves in culturally relevant books. Recently, Julius Anthony, the president and founder of St. Louis Black Authors and his group took things to the next level. They have produced four pilot episodes for a TV program. Each episode features a different children’s book by one of the St. Louis Black Authors. The announcement for that project appears below.
The first episode premiered on Friday, July 3rd. It featured the book Rock What You Got by Aja LaStar Owens. Below is a screen capture of the episode which is available on YouTube. It is a lively well-done show designed to be the first in a series of remote summer programs. The series is open to the public.
Here is the link to this first show, it’s about 20 minutes long and I REALLY recommend you watch it. I think you will be inspired. I know I was! – LINK.
The first episode was featured on a webinar conducted by Lindsey Newton who, among other things, hosts a show on the Channel Nine PBS station in St. Louis. That show features weekly read alouds of various children’s books. Here is a screen capture of Julius’ remarks about that show:
It is important to note that the first episode of the series was filmed on location at the very first Believe site that Julius and his group created. That site is located in the Ferguson Community Center in Ferguson Missouri. By the way, the name of the project, The Believe Project, is based on a poem Julius wrote entitled Believe. Future episodes of the program will appear on the Missouri Historical Society’s YouTube channel and on Channel 9’s YouTube channel beginning on July 6th. Julius has plans to create additional episodes of the TV show. If you want to find out more about the wonderful work Julius and his group is doing in St. Louis (and beyond!) here is a link to their website LINK. There you can look at books written by the 16 authors in the St. Louis Black Authors group and get more information on how to stream the first four episodes of this new project. Turn the Page St. Louis is arranging for 170 children in the St. Louis region to get copies of the books from this series. In my future blogs, you will be hearing more about the literacy work Turn the Page and other St. Louis regional organizations are doing in the St. Louis metro area. Stay Tuned!
So…, have a safe 4th of July weekend. Happy Reading and Writing.
Dr. Sam Bommarito (aka A true Believer in the St. Louis Black Authors and their work)
Copyright 2020 by Dr. Sam Bommarito. Views/interpretations expressed here are solely the view of this author and do not necessarily reflect the views of any other person or organization.
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