Saturday, December 08, 2007

The Power of Stories

On Friday, on the last day of our staff retreat to the Gulf, we traveled to New Orleans to visit Hands On New Orleans, the sister organization of the one we volunteered for in Biloxi (Hands On Gulf Coast.)

The staff and volunteers there took us to meet Ms. Jessie, an elderly woman whose house they just finished renovating.

They told us about all standing with her and waving goodbye as her FEMA trailer was pulled away.

They also showed us a public school they have worked on in an area severely hit by the storm.

All the public school libraries were completely wiped out during the storm.

Of course they would have been.

It hadn't even occurred to me.

I thought about how much The Mayor and The Rooster love to listen to stories.

I know not everyone can go down to New Orleans or the gulf in person to help with the rebuilding effort, but I did find a way that everyone can make a small difference...

Books purchased through Hands On New Orlean's Amazon.com wishlist will be sent directly to the Singleton Elementary School in New Orleans. (If the link doesn't work, just search for "Hands On New Orleans" in the Amazon wish list search function.)

If you have a mind to help I can promise you that the children of Singleton would find your gift miraculous.

I'm about to send an e-mail about the library wishlist to everyone I know...




32 comments:

Maddy said...

Well I like to think that you are our ambassador when it comes to these things [should that be ambassadoress?] Sounds to much like albatross!

Thanks for putting the link there. Since I am already in up to my neck with Amazon this should be easy. [technically challenged person.]
Cheers

This is my calling card or link"Whittereronautism"until blogger comments get themselves sorted out.

Hetha said...

And I shall do the same. You're wonderful OTJ. Thanks for inspiring us all!

flutter said...

this is great, Jess

Robin Marie said...

In February 2006 I spent two weeks in New Orleans and Waveland, Mississippi. Three of those days was spent sorting through an overwhelming number of donated children's books (and other people's garbage)to help the school start up their double-wide library that would be home for as many as 7 years. The response we got was overwhelming. If nothing else, children must have books. There is absolutely no question about it.

slouching mom said...

wonderful idea.
thanks, jess.

BlondeMomBlog (Jamie) said...

That is an awesome idea!

Arwen said...

I have been teaching my daughter the idea of tzedakah (pronounced 'sedaka', as in Neil).
http://www.answers.com/topic/tzedakah
She loves animal and books. We were speaking about the idea of the Christmas season and the act of charity and miracles. I just explained that they don't have books in the library in New Orleans. After she calmed down about the INJUSTICE! of the situation we deiceded this would be good tzedakah.
Thanks for giving me a good topic about it and for helping me mix religions up (since I am all about confusing my 6 year old).
Could you come up with a good topic for solstice too?

Fairly Odd Mother said...

I think you just gave me the idea of what to do with all the change we're about to count in my 'miscellaneous change jar'. Books for kids? I love to buy nothing more.

Kyla said...

That is great, Jess. I always think, it could so easily be us. We ran from Rita and luckily it dissipated, but it could have been.

Michelle said...

I just ordered two books for them. Thank you for providing the link. Sometimes I want to help so badly, but I don't know what I can do. I know it is a small thing, but it is something.

urban-urchin said...

What a good idea- thanks. The story of the nurse broke my heart.

PixelPi said...

Is someone going to keep track of how many copies of Charlotte's Web we all buy so the school doesn't get too many copies of one book? Will Amazon do that for us? Doesn't bother me, 12 copies of Goodnight Moon is fine.

To borrow the phrase that's everywhere....I'm just saying is all.

mauniejames3 said...

this is so wonderful of you...it's a great idea and I shall tell everyone I know...as usual thanks for the info.

Scarlett Wanna Be said...

Wonderful!!! Big D and I love to encourage kids to read...what a great way to not only do that but to also help out the hurricane victims!!
Thanks!

Lisa Milton said...

Thank you.

Jamie said...

As a Gulfport MS resident I just wanted to say thank you! It has been a rough time down here, but it is starting to look up! Thanks everyone!

Jamie in Mississippi

Mrs. Chicky said...

Sounds like an amazing opportunity to really help. I'm going over there to take a look right now.

Sugarplum's Mom said...

Thanks for posting the link. I much prefer to help out with things like that rather than just writing a check.

Jo Beaufoix said...

Brill idea. I'll go over and have a go.

Aliki2006 said...

This is just the best idea--thanks SO much for posting this here.

Magpie said...

Really great idea. Thanks for the heads up.

dawn224 said...

Building community! Look at you go!

painted maypole said...

you were in NOLA and you didn't call?

damn.

Chanda (aka Bea) said...

Great post, thank you for giving us the link and the information. Since I don't have children, this is a great excuse to go pick out kids books!

The Holmes said...

Thanks for posting this.

Dave Clapper said...

Thanks for posting this! I've posted the Amazon link on our news page as well, and encouraged folks to buy and plug the list on their own blogs.

JCK said...

My niece did a transformational journey this summer in New Orleans. It changed her life. And her stories were riveting. Thanks for the link on Amazon.

Paige said...

I have asked my two readers to put in their two cents to help the people of my homeland rebuild their tall-tale-telling ways.

You've done a good thing.

P

Above Average Joe said...

Kudos on the time you gave.

Alikat Corner said...

I have been reading your blog for a while now, just lurking, never left a comment. But I just wanted to tell you that you are a wonderfully amazing person.

MamaCarter said...

Thank you for letting us know about the library wish list. My little one's favorite activity (other than mayhem and destruction, of course) is reading - it humbles me to be reminded that others lost everything, including their books. I just sent a few books to the library - thanks for the inspiration.

MarthaQ said...

I've been lurking forever (and really love your blog). I wanted to come out of the closet, though, to tell you that that this post inspired me to use my Amazon gift certificate to "pay it forward".