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Growing up on the West side of Chicago, Ruby Asugha and other girls in the neighborhood faced uncertain futures. Although she and her friends dreamed of going to college, getting good jobs, and being successful, many of them veered off track – waylaid by drugs, teen pregnancy, poverty, and crime. Asugha, however, graduated from college, earned two master’s degrees, embarked on a successful business career, married happily, and had a family.
How and why did she succeed where so many of her friends and neighbors failed? In this book written for African-American girls of middle and junior high school age, Asugha tells her story, pointing out the pitfalls and offering candid advice on how to avoid them. She addresses racism, poverty, loneliness, peer pressure, and feelings of worthlessness. She recognizes young girls’ need for love, encourages them to seek out good role models, to rely on faith, and find a purpose for their life. At the end of each chapter, she asks readers thought-provoking questions to help them reflect on their own life. Quotes and short biographies of successful African-American women are also included to help inspire young girls to dream big and aspire beyond their own street corner.
Little Sisters, Listen Up!: A Message of Hope for Girls Growing Up in Poverty, Racism, and Despair.
By Ruby Asugha
Paperback: 103 pages
Age Range: 13 and up
Grade Level: 7 and up
Publisher: Boys Town Press (July 1, 2004)
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