Thursday, November 23, 2023

It's time to give thanks.

And there's no better way to show gratitude than to give back! That's why this year, we're thrilled to announce the Valorena Publishing & Cocoa Kids Collection® Scholarship supporting education, literacy and children's publishing.

Here are all the details:

(Nov. 21, 2023—Palisades, NY) Valorena Publishing is delighted to announce the launch of a new initiative aimed at furthering empowering literacy, children's publishing, and emerging female professionals in this field.

Hosted on, The Valorena Publishing & Cocoa Kids Collection® Scholarship seeks to support BIPOC and multicultural women to live authentically and share their unique stories by providing a $500 scholarship to support their studies and development in fields related to children's picture books.  

This scholarship is open to female, BIPOC, and multicultural high school, undergraduate, or graduate students with a creative portfolio, published projects, or those actively engaged in a course of study related to literacy, literature, poetry, writing, publishing, editing, or illustration. The application deadline is March 12, 2024.

Dr. Valerie Williams-Sanchez, a Ph.D. in Literacy (St. John's University, NY) is the founder of Valorena Publishing and the Cocoa Kids Collection® books. 

Dr. Williams-Sanchez expressed her hope that this scholarship will assist other BIPOC and multicultural women, like herself, in doing work or pursuing study relevant to the development of children's picture books.

"When I was developing my own book series, I faced a significant need for financial support to complete my publishing projects and academic studies," Dr. Williams-Sanchez said. "It is my hope that this prize, in even a small way, will make the journey a bit easier for the next generation of aspiring women of color looking to make their mark in the publishing space."

Valorena Publishing strongly believes that books serve as the backbone of society, imparting valuable lessons from a young age. For children, books often represent their first encounters with the world, shaping formative experiences that influence their views on society. The importance of diverse voices and characters in books cannot be overstated. Children's picture books featuring children of color, telling stories of empowerment, and supporting literacy development are crucial in communities of color and to readers everywhere. 

To learn more about the Cocoa Kids Collection® series, visit:

To apply, for this scholarship, visit:

Just a few days in, the scholarship has already received some amazing submissions. But we'd like to hear from more applicants! So please, do help spread the word. 

Also, know that the early support of the Cocoa Kids Collection® books Indiegogo campaign contributors have made so much of this possible, for which we remain eternally grateful! 

Wishing you and yours a holiday season full of grace, gratitude and thanksgiving.

Dr. Valerie ~

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