I want to shout from the treetops. Yippee! I am overwhelmed by the level of interest and demand for our therapeutic children’s picture book, ‘The Life of Tree’. We’ve even had media requests from the most unexpected places.
I’m also here to shout out to those generous people who gave to our crowdfunding campaign. We raised almost $2500 which is allowing us to send a whopping 99 free books out to remote women’s refuges across Australia. So far I’ve posted 47 books to every remote emergency accommodation shelter in the Northern Territory and Western Australia , directly targeting Aboriginal children escaping domestic and family violence in their communities.
As promised, here is our Shout Out to the donors on Chuffed who wanted to know where their book ended up. But thank you to all 63 individuals and organisations who kindly donated.
Wadeye – Toni Woods
Yuendemu – Jennifer Treyfrey-Bath
Angurugu – Christine Sellman
Raminginging – Annette Bex
Maningrida – Jean John
Peppimenarti – Judy Byrne
Wurrumiyanga – Anne Davis
Kalkarindji – Shaun Pearce
Lajamanu – Bridget Verrier
Ti Tree – Verity Kowal
Wugularr – Erin McKeegar
Ngukurr – Barry Sullivan
Ntaria – Jana Norman
Yarralin – Simon Faulkner
Our hope is that ‘The Life of Tree’ will be read to children by support workers in these refuges, to help them talk about and make sense of the trauma they have experienced. We also have hopes that refuge staff will engage in strength-building conversations that acknowledge the skills, abilities and knowledge that children have in surviving and coping with storms in their lives. We can’t wait to hear how these books are received in the refuges.
In the meantime, we are starting to hear some great stories about how other people are using the book in their communities. After buying 10 copies for their school, Gunbalanya community is incorporating the use of ‘The Life of Tree’ into their school curriculum. Cops For Kids, a charity in South Australia are funding 20 books in schools in the APY Lands. Our book is being snapped up by a diverse range of services from rehabilitation, community health, mental health and Aboriginal health, to legal, counselling, foster care, disability and child care services. We are posting from Tasmania to Darwin, Perth to Alice Springs.
We continue to get messages of thanks for the free books and appreciation for our work. This means so much to Christine and I.
Perhaps we’ll write and paint some more one day if it helps those who have experienced trauma…. but for now, we’ll keep shouting! Yippee!