In Nov 2017, after the Diwali break, I got a frantic call from another distraught parent…Our children are suffering because of the unhealthy, polluted air. Can we request their school to put purifiers in the classrooms? Can’t we do anything about it?
It struck me then that the future of our children – and their health – lies in their own hands. It can become brighter only if they change and if WE (the parents) change. If we want to protect ourselves, WE need to protect our environment first. If we want to see the bright stars and blue skies in our cities again, WE (the citizens) need to change our everyday habits. And thus, City of Stars was conceived!
I started writing stories linked to air and other forms of environmental pollution in the form of real-life conversations between a child and his parents. I conceptualised the book as a calendar as I want the stories to be READ over and over again throughout the year to have a long lasting impact. I designed the EXPERIENCE pages along with the stories to make children fall in love with stars and nature, become more aware of their environmental conditions, experience the stories themselves and imbibe the learnings to bring about a real behavioural change.
The character of Abdu is inspired by my four-year-old son, to whom I have been reading these stories, while writing and rewriting them over the past one year. I hope this experiential calendar book will introduce all the little Abdus across the world to the small and big lifestyle changes for a GREENER, CLEANER and HEALTHIER planet!
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