This Black-Owned, Sister-Founded Company Creates Our New Favorite Line of Inclusive (& Adorable!) Books & Toys

Sisters Kristen O’Meally and Lamia Haley are making a tangible difference in the life of a child — and thus the world — one flashcard at a time. And we know that might sound too simple to be true, but even though those things are small (4 inches by 5 inches, to be exact) they are mighty.

O’Meally and Haley — an educator and a toddler mom, respectively — combined forces to create a company that would foster diversity, inclusion, self-love, and emotional understanding in children. And thus, Kids for Culture was born. The Black- and women-owned small business makes toys, books, puzzles, and flashcards for kids that are intentional and align with the sisters’ vision.

“We hope our business exposes children to diversity and self-awareness at a young age,” they told Canvas Rebel. “Get them talking and learning about their own experiences and experiences outside of their immediate lives. With this, we hope to teach children to love and understand themselves, as well as others, and decrease the racial divide that still stems across the nation today.”

And yes, sometimes it just starts with a family or classroom having a doll of color or a flashcard that says, “O is for Opinion. I will not let the opinion of others define me.” Below are some of our favorite products from the sisters’ beautifully conceptualized and beautifully made line.

Kids for Culture

The ABC Affirmation Baby Book (which is also available as flashcards!) could be one of our favorite board books ever. And we’re not the only ones who feel that way! It was a National Parenting Product Award winner in 2023. The colorful creation doesn’t just teach kids the alphabet. It teaches them to love themselves and others. Each letter has its own positive affirmation — like “I is for Individuality. My individuality makes me unique.” and “V is for Voice. My voice matters.” — that helps kids build self-confidence and respect for those around them.

Kids for Culture

This soft baby book with teethers and a travel clip is as much a learning experience as it is a sensory one. With Everyone is Different, babies can interact with the different textures and munch on the corners as they learn about diversity and the fact that, yes, some people have different eyes, some people have different hair, and so on.

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Kids for Culture

Kids for Culture has two lines of Positive Pals dolls. There are the crinkle blanket dolls (pictured above) that have the words “I am loved” written on their outfits and a travel clip on their hand. They also have baby dolls (seen here) that have “I am kind,” “I am loved,” or “I am amazing” written on them. Representation like this matters — because we know that when kids can see themselves in their dolls, books, TV shows, and more, their sense of self-worth rises.

Kids for Culture

Kids for Culture also specializes in social-emotional learning flashcards. The ABC affirmation book comes in flashcard format (in case you missed the memo above) and there are also the emotional literacy flashcards. The two dozen cards show a diverse group of kids who feel lonely, amazed, jealous, and everything in between. The illustrated expressions can help kids identify their own feelings.

Kids for Culture

With this giant 48-piece puzzle, kids quite literally come face-to-face with representation as they build 10 different friends from around the world. There’s the little girl in Japan and the little boy in Washington D.C., and kids can see that even though these friends have differences, there are also plenty of commonalities. We’re looking at you, cherry blossoms!

Check out these adorable and exciting toys from Black-owned companies that your kids will love all year long.

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