Reporting and translation by ChildFund Brazil
Graziela lives in Brazil and participates in programs that ChildFund Brazil developed in partnership with Grupo de Educação, Desenvolvimento e Apoio ao Menor (GEDAM), in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais.
Having grown up in one of the most racially mixed countries in the world, the 16-year-old knows a few things about racial prejudice — enough to fill a book.
So she did.
First, read the translation below, and then enjoy Graziela’s handiwork at ChildFund Brazil. Although the story is in Portuguese, it is easy to follow.
Once upon a time, there was a girl named Clarice. Clarice has light skin and long hair that is blond, like her daddy’s.
Clarice’s mother has quite dark skin and also carries a baby in her womb. Soon Clarice will have a sister.
At school, Clarice enjoys playing with Anabel and Berenice, but she doesn’t like to play with Matilda.
Matilda is very beautiful and intelligent, but Clarice does not like her, because Matilda is black.
One day Clarice arrives home from school and has a surprise: Her baby sister has been born!
Clarice is even more surprised to see that Mariana is pretty … and black, just like her mom and Matilda.
Even so, Clarice loves Mariana so much! She doesn’t care about the little dark body and the black curls.
At school, Clarice decides to talk to Matilda, who looks so much like Mariana. The two are friends now.
Clarice finally realizes that a person’s skin color doesn’t matter at all. What really matters is the size of the light that colors a person’s soul.