CHICAGO — In West Chatham, a chance to grow young brains came down to one of the neighborhood’s biggest stars.
Chance the Rapper, who grew up in the South Side neighborhood, is holding the first of eight ‘Books and Breakfast’ events in Chicago, traveling to three other parts of the city in the coming weeks.
Educator and author Bri McLean, the inspiration for the event that brings families to the parks, said parents are the first and most important teachers.
“We all have teachers at school, but your most important teacher is right here with you,” McLean said.
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For the Grammy Award-winning Chance, it’s a great opportunity to go back and give back to the communities he grew up in.
“We just wanted to go back to communities. It’s inspired by the Black Panthers’ free breakfast program, and they just believe if you give food a human right, give them access to literacy and reading materials, it’s good for development,” Chance the Rapper said.
The children had an opportunity to spend time with their families over food and books, discussing topics relevant to their lives while engaging with the community.
“The students were just so engaged and so excited. All the books that we’ve chosen have characters that look like them, so they can wrap around characters and topics that are relevant to communities we’re in,” Chance said.