In 2016, World Atlas ranked Oakland as the 3rd most dangerous city in the country.
According to the City of Oakland’s Department of Human Services, youth living in high-stress neighborhoods face profound challenges to their academic success, health and safety.
Kamaria is creating a children's book about Oakland. The story will celebrate the city's cultural diversity and introduce readers to the history, landmarks and activities that make up Oakland.
"You know now Oakland is the place to be but in the past, a lot of people felt like oh it's a dangerous city, or it's dirty, or it's you know the lesser of the Bay Area cities – San Francisco would be the top place to visit but not Oakland – but you know we have our own zoo, we have a theme park for children, um the lake is a great place to take your children, to take your family.
There's just a lot to offer the city that I felt like was being overshadowed by spouts of violence and maybe any political stuff that may have been going on," Kamaria said.
After graduating from Mills College, Kamaria taught preschool in her family’s Oakland Hills home.
But in 2014, the home was sold and the family only got a one-month notice to move.
They were unable to find another home in time, so Kamaria became homeless and jobless.
"It was really hard to you know go to school, to feel like you're doing all of the right things, um, and then to just be put out basically on the street," Kamaria said.
She turned her misfortune around by focusing on her writing.
In March, Kamaria started a GoFundMe page for My City is Oakland.
So far she has raised $3,500, but she needs to raise $8,500 to publish the books.
She hopes to have all of the books distributed by August, just in time for school.
For more information about My City is Oakland or to find out how you can help, go to www.gofundme.com/jww7wnu4.