I was strolling through the corridors of Instagram recently and I came upon an interesting account as one often does when stalking someone’s page. It was the account for a doll company and I was in awe as I went through the various posts. Here was a doll company that was making the type of doll that many of us did not have to play and learn from when we were younger; a range of dolls that celebrate the strength and beauty of the African woman. I hopped on over to their website and the first thing I clicked on in the menu was ‘about’ and this is what I saw;
“On a recent trip to Ghana we visited Cape coast Elmina castle. The stories we heard about slavery and the brave women who fought for black freedom really touched us. We felt it is very important for us to remember and also educate our children and future generations about these powerful women in history. It was this trip that inspired us to create Nana dolls.
Nana means Queen or King in West Africa, Ghana. We wanted to teach the younger generation this important history whilst also having fun. There were many strong courageous women from all over Africa who helped to fight for freedom. Amongst those are four who have inspired Nana dolls. Yaa Asantewaa from Ghana, Mbuya Nehanda from Zimbabwe, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti from Nigeria and Miriam Makeba from South Africa. Each doll’s character is inspired by one of these historical Queens.”
Nana Dolls are available in 15 stores worldwide and you can order online at hellonanadolls.com. They might just look like toys but for a significant part of a girl’s life, she is completely fascinated by these pseudo-humans. These dolls are not just about having pretty things to play with, they are about teaching our girls about strength, character and beauty. The dolls aren’t beautiful just because the manufacturers got the right color skin or gave them pretty hair or dressed them in MAD dresses, they are beautiful mostly because of who and what they signify.
The next time you want to get your daughter, niece, cousin, sister or even the younger sister of the girl you have eyes on a present, I think you should get her a Nana Doll. Teach her that she is a little queen and remind her that she can and should have royal dreams.