In times where division seems more common than unity, PORCH neighbors work together to relieve community hunger. Their new picture book, Planting Hope,tells the tale of a hard-working girl and a golden seed who bring unity to a divided garden. This whimsical story, written and illustrated by kids for kids represents how PORCH has planted a seed that has nourished an entire community. PORCH is an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization that has united thousands of neighbors in a shared mission of relieving local hunger in Chapel Hill and Carrboro, North Carolina. We believe this book will inspire others to take action and make positive change in their communities.
One of the special things about this book is the way it was created. PORCH believes in collaboration. So we worked with two dynamic teaching artists: writer, Susie Wilde and textile artist, Peg Gignoux. They guided 30 children from an ESL classroom at Smith Middle School and children from the Roger’s Road Community Center. The children ranged in age from 5-12 and they wrote and illustrated this book.
I think this project was so much fun because the students would argue with each other and debate so much. All of that brought us together. I don’t even remember what we discussed exactly but the feeling we had of being together sticks to me really well and it’s a nice warm feeling that I wish I had every day.”
– Sarmuna Wei, Smith Middle School
Artists at Work
All our artists worked hard to complete this masterpiece. Susie Wilde began by leading a writing residency with the children. They developed characters and plot and three months and 18 drafts later we had a story.
Once the words were planted, the kids began an illustration residency with textile artist Peg Gignoux. The kids dyed cloth. Then they printed on it with simple stamps and ink.Then they combined these fabrics into collages. They made grass they made dirt, they made night, they made dreams They became illustrators and grew a garden. Below are pictures capturing the process.
Finally, book designer Steve Godwin merged the children’s text and pictures until Planting Hope blossomed.
To learn more about Planting Hope, watch the 3 minute video created for PORCH’s successful Kickstarter. It shows the young artists, writers, PORCH volunteers and co-founders all coming together for one purpose – to end hunger in our community. Feeling inspired? Have questions? Contact us at: email@example.com
Mary Andrews from the Chapel Hill-Carrboro School District put together a wonderful conversation card as a companion to Planting Hope. It is a perfect tool to be used to bring about discussion in a classroom, community center or home. Please download here a free copy of the conversation card today!
About your Donation
Please consider a donation. Donations help us continue “planting hope” by providing books and food to neighbors in our community.