June 12, 2018
Tallahassee’s “Little Lobbyist” Releases Book to Inspire Activism and Inclusion
Read “Paloma’s Dream,” a Memoir by 12-Year-Old Advocate for Blind Youth
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – There are thousands of motivational books out there that will inspire and move you — but few are from the mind and heart of a 12-year-old. Paloma Rambana, a local seventh grader at Maclay School, is redefining what it means to be a young person, a lobbyist, an advocate and, now, a published author. Her new book, “Paloma’s Dream,” details how she successfully lobbied the Florida Legislature to help secure $1.25 million in funds for blind and visually impaired kids.
Born with a rare eye condition called Peter’s Anomaly, Paloma became the “Little Lobbyist” who made a big difference. In “Paloma’s Dream,” Paloma tells her story with spirit, humor and heart in a memoir that is sure to inspire kindness and activism in people of all ages.
“By sharing my story, I hope to encourage others to be makers of change. I hope readers will get a better understanding of me and how I tick,” said Paloma.
In 2015, Paloma launched an advocacy campaign “Fund the Gap” after realizing that blind and visually impaired kids between the ages of six and 13 don’t receive state aid for equipment or mobility training outside of school (such as magnifiers or lessons in Braille), regardless of financial need. As part this campaign, Paloma has met with dozens of state lawmakers, Florida’s governor and congressional leaders; led two marches on Florida’s Capitol; and has spoken publicly to groups across the U.S.
Paloma was named a 2018 Health Hero by O, The Oprah Magazine, and has been called “a model of the American spirit” by President Donald Trump and “one of tomorrow’s leaders” by former President Barack Obama. She was also named one of America’s Top 10 Youth Volunteers of 2018 by Prudential Financial. She most recently appeared as a speaker during the Tallahassee Democrat’s Storytellers Night on May 15.
Paloma is the daughter of Tallahassee-based immigration attorneys Neil St. John Rambana and Elizabeth Ricci, partners in the Rambana & Ricci law firm. She has a nine-year-old sister, Belén.
“Paloma’s Dream: The True Story of One Girl’s Mission to Help Kids, Inspire Activism and Survive Middle School” is $12.99 and available at www.PalomasDream.org. It also available in stores at Midtown Reader, located at 1123 Thomasville Rd., and My Favorite Books, located at 1410 Market St Suite C-2.
Those who are interested in meeting Paloma can attend the following Tallahassee book signings in August:
202 ½ S. Adams Street
August 11, 2018
2 – 4 p.m.
Hearth and Soul**
1410 Market Street
August 26, 2018
My Favorite Books**
1410 Market St Suite C-2
Sept. 15, 2018
Noon – 2 p.m.
*Exclusive club member event
**Free and open to the pubic
What Others are Saying about “Paloma’s Dream”
“May I say this remarkable young lady has produced a highly readable and inspirational narrative! Who says you can’t change the world (or at least a significant chunk of it)? Well done!”
– Tom Flanigan, Program Director for WFSU News
“Paloma shows the power of one voice to make a difference. She lifted her voice to help kids with visual problems and she used that same voice to stand up to bullies. If we are going to change the culture of bullying, we need young people to speak up and to lead the way. Paloma is that shining example.”
– Morgan Guess, Founder of the Guess Anti-Bullying Foundation
“Paloma puts in print life experiences and her special journey that demonstrates the power of one, no matter how young or challenged. This extraordinary young lady is an inspiration and example for others on how to live and persevere, as well as how one can foster and champion change for those who do not have a voice. Despite her visual impairment, she sees, understands and has the insight, courage and drive from which many can learn. Bene Factum!”
– Salvatore M. Blandino, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist and Co-Chair of District 6940 Rotary Youth Exchange of Florida
Paloma Rambana holding her new book, “Paloma’s Dream”
The front cover of “Paloma’s Dream”