Granny Bulletin: November 2017

Welcome to the Granny Bulletin, your source for news, stories and information about exciting initiatives from the Stephen Lewis Foundation’s Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign.

In this Granny Bulletin:

  1. Grassroots Newsletter — Investing in Girls 
  2. Holiday Tribute Cards
  3. Helping to Promote Powered by Love
  4. A Treat for Your Taste Buds

Dear Grandmothers and Grandothers,

African grandmothers and their community-based organizations are finally beginning to get the recognition they deserve, as the drivers of the response to HIV&AIDS in Africa at the grassroots. You will be as thrilled as we are that our book, Powered by Love: A Grandmothers’ Movement to End AIDS in Africa was profiled alongside one of our long-time partners, Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project, in the UNAIDS World AIDS Day Report this year! The Report describes the grandmothers as the “cornerstone of the community,” something all of us in the Grandmothers Campaign have long understood and shouted from the rooftops!  You can read about Nyaka and see Powered by Loveprofiled on page 43 of the Report.

Speaking of Powered by Love, we are eager to let you know that last week it topped the CBC’s bestseller list for Canadian non-fiction! Incredible! This was thanks, in very large part, to the extraordinary book launches organized by grandmothers groups across Canada.

What may have seemed like an impossible feat to many (42 book launches across Canada in a month!) was made possible by you – your hard work, your commitment and your dedication to this movement.

As we arrived in your communities at all times of the day and night, you welcomed us with open arms and warm embraces. We estimate that more than 3,000 grandmothers, grandothers, and members of the public attended book launches and that 2,000 books were sold during the book tour alone!

There were moments of joy and laughter and there were moments of heartache and remembrance. And through it all, there was love and a celebration of African grandmothers’ resilience.

For those of you who were not able to host book launches (as well as those of you who were), this Granny Bulletin includes a number of ideas about how you can help Powered by Love reach even broader audiences.

With gratitude and love,
Jonea, Megan, Olivia, Healy, and Graham

2. Grassroots Newsletter — Investing in Girls 

The Fall Grassroots newsletter is here!

The feature article in this Fall’s Grassroots is about girls’ vulnerability to sexual violence and sexual coercion and the educational and therapeutic programmes that community-based organizations employ to turn the tide of HIV & AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa.

“It can happen anywhere—in schools, in families, in workplaces, in fields, on dark morning walks to school, and when impoverished young girls engage in survival sex (sex for food, sex for school fees, etc.). Understanding this reality is central to understanding why 7,500 girls between 15 and 25 years old are infected with HIV every week, and why girls are up to five times more likely to be infected by HIV than their male counterparts….

“An essential component of these programmes is a concerted effort to bolster the knowledge, resolve, strength, economic security and resilience of girls to advocate for their own sexual rights and autonomy.”

You can read the full Grassroots newsletter online.

If you would like to order copies of the Fall 2017 Grassroots for your group members and/or for use at your events, please contact your Grandmothers Campaign Officer or

2. Holiday Tribute Cards

Our beautiful holiday cards are here and are available to all grandmothers groups that would like to have them on hand at upcoming fundraising events.

A Holiday Tribute card can be given to anyone who makes a donation of $10 or more in honour of a friend, family member or colleague this holiday season. The donor can, in turn, give the holiday card to the person they are honouring to convey that a generous gift has been given to the SLF in their name. The message inside the card reads: “I wanted to give you a gift that is truly meaningful by making a donation in your honour to the Stephen Lewis Foundation. Happy Holidays!”

As always, donations of $20 or more are eligible for a Canadian tax receipt. If you’d like to order holiday cards for your group to have on hand at upcoming fundraisers, please email your Grandmothers Campaign Officer, or

(Please Note: If you would like to make a personal Holiday Tribute donation and have a card sent to the person you wish to honour, please visit the Stephen Lewis Foundation website.)

3. Helping to Promote Powered by Love

As the excitement surrounding Powered by Love: A Grandmothers’ Movement to End AIDS in Africa has grown through book launches, best seller lists, and media coverage, many grandmothers groups have asked us how they can help to promote the book as we move into the winter holiday season and the new year. Over the next week or two, we will reach out to each grandmothers group with some more creative ideas for book promotion, but for now we wanted to share our “top 3” list. 

1.) Write a Review

Numerous positive reviews on booksellers’ websites play a significant role in increasing book sales and the book’s prominence on those sites. If you were moved by Powered by Love, please take a moment to post a review on &! The reviews don’t have to be long (although long is welcome); they just have to be heartfelt! 

2.) Get Social Media Social

Do you have a Facebook or Twitter account? Share the front cover image of the book, the book flyer or a link to purchase the book on Facebook or Twitter. Do you plan to host a book-selling event? Post about the event on Facebook or Twitter! If you’re planning to tweetplease use the hash tag #poweredbylove so that others can follow all of the “Powered by Love” events. And remember to visit the Powered by Love book website and share the link!

3) Sell the book at upcoming events or hold your own book launch

Powered by Love is filled with stories of older women breaking down walls and forging communities and of international sisterhoods built on equality, solidarity and mutual respect. It is a powerful tool for building the movement, dismantling stereotypes, and increasing support for African grandmothers and community-based organizations. And with its stunning photographs and deeply moving stories, it is a perfect holiday gift.

Grandmothers groups can buy the book in bulk from the publisher at 40% off cover price to sell at your fundraising and awareness-raising events and your marketplaces.

You can also buy the books directly from the publisher or work with a local book store to hold a book launch in your community (either as a part of an existing event or as a standalone event). We have a number of materials that you can use at your book launches.

To learn more about how to order books from the publisher or how to hold a book launch, please contact your Grandmothers Campaign Officer or email

Book Materials and Resources Available to Grandmothers Groups

We have a several resources available to grandmothers groups to help you in your efforts to promote the book.

Videos about the Book 
We have recently completed a 10 minute video about the book that includes clips from interviews with African grandmothers, Joanna Henry, and Ilana Landsberg-Lewis. This video is a great resource for book launches and for incorporating the book into your other events. A member of your group can speak to the importance of grandmothers groups working in solidarity with African grandmothers to really round out the presentation.

You can complement the 10 minute book video with a 6 minute video of Michele Landsberg and Stephen Lewis talking about the book and a 4 minute video of the new song “Powered by Love” and a slideshow featuring book photos.

Book Flyer and Cover Image
We have a a book flyer that shares the front cover image and a brief overview of the book that could be handed out at your upcoming fundraising events to let your supporters know about the book. Click here to download the flyer.  

We also have a high resolution image of the front cover of the book that can be used on social media or in in designing your own materials. Click here to download the image of the book cover. 

“Join the Grandmothers Campaign” Bookmarks
We now have a bookmark! Click here to see what the bookmark looks like. The bookmark can be used at book launches or as an outreach tool, encouraging people to join the movement.  Contact your Grandmothers Campaign Officer or email to let us know how many your group would like and we’ll gladly mail them to you. 

4. A Treat for Your Taste Buds

We are happy to share the news of the soon-to-be-released cookbook, African Food for Thought: A Tribute to Grandmothers. This book is the culmination of a decade of hard work and collaboration between a small group of women who attended the inaugural grandmothers gathering in Toronto in 2006.

The cookbook will retail for $35.00 with all royalties going to the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign.

In the words of the authors: “This book would not be what it is without you – grandmothers and grand-others across Canada and Africa! You understood immediately that although a cookbook may seem an unlikely way to [bring grandmothers across continents together], food plays as central a role in the lives of families in Africa as in Canada. Furthermore, in every culture grandmothers and their grandchildren share a unique bond often nurtured by the warmth and comfort of food. Favourite recipes carry traditions and memories of cultural heritage, families, and intimate personal moments.”

If you’d like to purchase this book (for yourself, your group or a loved one) it will be available online at Chapters/Indigo in early December. In the meantime, you can read a more detailed description of the book from its authors here and visit the cookbook website to learn more.

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