Hard Ball Press, in collaboration with children’s book author Mark Torres, has donated 200 bilingual children’s books to the Puerto Rico Teachers Federation (FMPR). The seven titles, all picture books for young children, explore the kinds of social justice themes that families in Puerto Rico face every day, including fair wages (Joelito’s Big Decision, Jimmy’s Carwash Adventure), indigenous people’s rights and culture (Margarito’s Forest), gender equality (Hats Off For Gabbie!), and economic inequality (The Cabbage That Came Back). Mark’s book, Good Guy Jake teaches children how a union fights to reinstate a sanitation worker unfairly fired for taking toys from the trash that he repaired and gave to children in a local shelter for Christmas.
With so many books destroyed by the hurricane, the children in many schools in the San Juan area have enjoyed the books, including teenage students with learning disabilities. Hard Ball Press will be donating copies of all new children’s books as they come into print.