Black women are rarely praised for our beauty. We exist in a world that constantly reminds us that we don't fit the

normative. So how would it feel to have someone design a doll that looks like you, reflects your personality?  Wonderful!.

Meet Amandina. She is based on photographs of me, and was designed by Kristen Belton Willis who, "created Abena's Family to help the diverse children and adults around the world find a doll that looks like them."

I named my doll "Amandina,"  a Tanzanian name that means "she who must be loved."  The name has special significance for me.  But more importantly, when I look at Amandina, I see my own beauty reflected.  It can't get any better than that.

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Photo Opt Courtesy of Abena's Family