We were joined by students from Backwell Junior School for an interesting and informative visit from Canadian author Deborah Ellis. Deborah’s books are inspired by her regular travels to war torn areas of the world , such as Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bolivia.
She explained to us the plights of children living in these areas and how they put their lives in danger almost daily to help their families survive.
We learned about young girls dressing as boys to work and obtain food for families that have seen their men and boys murdered. Also the appalling conditions endured in Bolivian prisons and the children forced to work for drug cartels, pounding coca leaves in cocaine pits which also contain sulphuric acid and kerosene. When their feet become too damaged for them to work they are taken back and dumped on city streets where they face abuse and starvation.
Deborah’s talk told us about lives very different to our own and introduced us to strong minded characters, determined to create better lives for themselves. We all came away with a lot to think about and a real keenness to read her books which, despite their content, are very accessible to readers from Yr 6 upwards.
The Library ladiez suggest you try The Breadwinner or Prison Runner. To discover all of her books and to find out more about Deborah’s work click here.