#BadAssLady: Sailaja Joshi of Bharat Babies
When we meet badass women, we know it. Whether we're out in the SaltyGirl community or finding friends online, we know a #BadAssLady when we see her. We instantly fell in love with Bharat Babies, childrens books about diversity, when we first disovered them. As mothers, we want our kids to be good citizens of this world we live in and so we especially admire mamas who are out there getting sh!t done in order to see progress. We know how important it is for our kids to see diverse kids literature for a diverse world, so we're sharing about Bharat Babies and the #BadAssLady behind this publishing house, Sailaja Joshi. Sailaja is a woman to watch so we asked her some of our favorite SaltyGirl questions to give you a little midweek inspiration and so that you could get to know her and her brand!
What is Your Ultimate Goal in Life?
Well. I’m an aspiring dog owner. Ok, I know it sounds silly, but I really want a tan, goldendoodle who can also be a therapy dog to help kids with reading challenges. I know, I know, but really if my husband is reading this interview PLEASE LET ME GET A DOG.
Also I want to continue to bridge the diversity gap in children’s literature, be a movement of change in the kid’s lit accessibility gap, and also meet Oprah and Michelle Obama.
What led you down the path of starting Bharat Babies?
When I was pregnant with my first child, I was having a library themed baby shower and wanted to find some books for my newborn daughter that reflected and celebrated my Indian culture, history, and heritage. I was shocked by the lack of appropriate books in this category and witnessed the diversity gap in children’s literature.
Refusing to live in a world where my daughter would not see herself on the cover of a book, I took matters into my own hands and founded Bharat Babies in 2014. In the past five years, we've bootstrapped the funding to produce thirteen books across four product categories with several more in the works. We are on a mission to not only dramatically shift the landscape of children's literature and ensure the stories of traditionally marginalized communities are brought to the forefront of bookshelves but also help make diverse books available to all children regardless of their economic standing. With the pre-order release of our fourteenth book, Finding Om, we have also started our #1001DiverseBooks campaign where we commit to raising the funds to donate 1001 diverse books to a nonprofit to close both the diversity and accessibility gap. After just 5 days of this initiative, we have over 1001 diverse books sponsored!
Is there a #Badasslady that you look up to that has inspired you in what you are doing?
I’m pretty lucky to have many! My mom to start, my two grandmothers...my husband’s grandmothers, my mother in law, my sister...but I think the one that inspires me the most, inspires me to do more, is my daughter.
What makes you a #Badass?
I don't settle. I stay humble. And I'm always open to learn.
You can purchase Bharat Babies line of children's books online and be sure to follow them on Instagram, Facebook and twitter!