Get to know our fabulous Girl Rising writers with our comprehensive toolkits. Each kit contains everything you need to have a lively, informed discussion about our writer, her work, and the history and culture of her country.
We’ve included discussion questions, a Q&A, background on the country, and even recipes to make for a gathering with your friends.
You’ll also find toolkits geared toward high school students and younger kids.
And we’ll be adding new toolkits as we go along. So get reading!
First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers
by Loung Ung
From a childhood survivor of Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge regime comes a riveting narrative of war, desperate actions, and the unnerving strength of a child and her family. Bolstered by the remarkable bravery of one brother and sustained by her sister’s gentle kindness amid brutality, Loung forged ahead to create a courageous new life. Harrowing yet hopeful, insightful and compelling, this family’s story is truly unforgettable. The book illuminates how conflict and political repression can disrupt a girl’s education, but offers a story of transcendence and hope.
Beneath the Lion’s Gaze
by Maaza Mengiste
This debut novel, which the New York Times called “an important novel, rich in compassion for its anguished characters,” opens in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 1974, on the eve of a revolution. Yonas kneels in his mother’s prayer room, pleading to his god for an end to the violence that has wracked his family and country. His father, Hailu, a prominent doctor, has been ordered to report to jail after helping a victim of state-sanctioned torture to die. And Dawit, Hailu’s youngest son, has joined an underground resistance movement—a choice that will lead to more upheaval and bloodshed across a ravaged Ethiopia.
Beneath the Lion’s Gaze tells a gripping story of family, of the bonds of love and friendship set in a time and place that has rarely been explored in fiction before. It is a story about the lengths human beings will go in pursuit of freedom and the human price of a national revolution.
Young Adult Toolkit
This toolkit, geared toward high school students, offers a sample of books around the world (Cambodia, Ethiopia, Uganda and more) that deal with a wide range on complicated, and often controversial, issues such as genocide, abuse and child marriage. We’ve also included discussion questions, menu ideas and ways for you to take action based on the difficult questions these books raise.
Middle Grade Toolkit
The middle grade toolkit is for our younger readers. The books in this collection, from countries like Sudan, Nepal and Haiti, explore topics such as war, immigration, and gender inequality. And of course, we have discussion questions, menu ideas, and opportunities for action.