DES MOINES, Iowa — Noemi Mendez has spent decades working in education.
As principal at Capitol View Elementary in Des Moines, she's a champion for students of color and immigrant and refugee families.
More than half of the students at her school are immigrants, some of whom don't speak English.
That's what inspired Mendez to become an author. She wrote her book "Besitos De Lejitos, Kisses from a Distance" in 2020.
"It's in regards to coming back to the schools [during the pandemic] and the fear of the unknown of what was going to happen to our babies when they came into those walls in our building," Mendez said.
By writing books featuring Latino characters and writing in Spanish and English, Mendez hopes to inspire kids who look like her.
"I want them to just understand that they're reflected in the stories that I'm going to be writing..." Mendez said. "And the messages that I write in the stories are just so full of different types of inspiration."
To buy Mendez's book in person, you can see her Friday at 5 p.m. at Pots and Shots in West Des Moines.
She will also hold an event at Ritual Cafe on April 8.
You can purchase "Besitos De Lejitos, Kisses from a Distance" online via Amazon.
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