Monday 3 August, 2020

Jamaican duo releases coronavirus children's book

Two creatives with a penchant for social entrepreneurship and a friendship that is older than their sons’ ages combined have announced the timely release of their collaboration, “Coronavirus: Get Outta Here,” a children’s book for boys and girls, ages 6 thru 12.

Peter Ivey, the writer, and Andrew Blake, the illustrator, both Jamaica College Alums and fathers of 9-year old boys, created the book to help children to understand COVID-19-- what it is, how they can protect themselves and how to manage difficult emotions around the uncertainty created by information and misinformation circulating about the pandemic.

“When we started this project, we understood that there was plenty of information available on the internet about coronavirus but at the time, none was child friendly and as parents we felt the need to control what our boys were learning; you know, not too much and not too little,” explained Blake.

“We are seeing some children’s material trickling in now, mostly from Governments and NGOs but a few weeks ago when you couldn’t find child-friendly material on coronavirus anywhere and my son PJ was trying to make sense of it all, I knew I had to do something. I called Andrew and we began to plan,” said Ivey.

Best friends for more than twenty-five years, the duo has collaborated on no less than ten businesses and charities. Among them are the highly acclaimed culinary edutainment company, The Reggae Chefs, and hunger charity, Mission:FoodPossible.

“We shifted course many years ago to dedicate our time to social entrepreneurship and social projects,” said Ivey. “So this came naturally to us amidst the crisis, especially because we have children of our own.”

Blake has been creating art in one form or another since he was able to grasp a pencil. Born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica, he has been the creative force behind the logos of an extensive variety of local and international companies and organizations.  His skillset runs the gamut of creativity: illustrations, graphic design, animation and content creation.

Ivey, born and raised in Spanish Town, Jamaica but living in New York, is a writer, a trained Chef, an entrepreneur and a speaker. He is the CEO of The Reggae Chefs and the Founder of Mission:FoodPossible. He is also the man behind the pen of ‘Yardie in Cayman’ on Loop Cayman. Ivey received a Certificate of Special (US) Congressional Recognition for “Outstanding and Invaluable Service to the Community” in 2017. The Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce and Industries (CACCI) also recognized him with The 2016 Business Visionary Award and he received the 2016 Business Innovation and Game Changer Award from the Caribbean American Leadership Foundation.

Ivey and Blake have decided to make their book available for free at this link and ask readers to send feedback to thereggaechefs@gmail.com .

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