Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Helping the world?s children

Children?s poetry book plans to make a difference

Whit Albright with his son Fisher whose handprint is ?Create for Our Children?s? logo.

Concern for the state of children in the world not only motivated Whit and Kristen Albright to publish a children's book, it provoked them to create the non-profit organization "Create for Our Children."

"Create for Our Children" will launch its first children's book, "From a Smile Falls a Laugh," at a book party on Saturday, June 30, at the American Legion Hall at 220 Cottonwood St. from 4 to 7 p.m. All proceeds from the book's first printing will be given to an orphanage in Mapalo, Zambia.

Whit has been writing children's poetry for over 12 years. When he married his wife, Kristen, the two discussed doing a children's book together, but it wasn't until after the birth of their second child that they finally got serious about it.

"Last October we had a brainstorm and started discussing the state of the world and specifically the state of children in the world," Kristen said. "We were having our second child and were hyper sensitive to things. We sent $15 to several different non-profit groups, but we thought that wasn't enough."

After a brainstorming session last October, the Albrights decided to produce a book with Whit's poems and start a non-profit organization that would contribute one hundred percent of its proceeds to children in need.

"We could not find a reliable source," Kristen said. "We had to have accountability, and it was by chance that one of our board members was at a party and met Peter DeBaun who started 'Fishing for Life' with a group of fly-fishing guides from Idaho."

DeBaun is a fly-fishing guide for Silver Creek Outfitters in Ketchum and is also the director of an orphanage in Malpalo, Zambia.

"After all costs we hope to raise $30,000," Kristen said. "Peter needed money to run an orphanage of 300 children. They need supplies, medicine, teachers and clothing. He said that after an audit he needed $30,000. The story is on the first page of the book."

Whit has given up all rights to his poetry, 12 years worth of writing, to "Create for Our Children," and along with Kristen the two have learned to be self-publishers.

"The whole thing has taken on a life of its own, and there is no way just one of us could have done it," Kristen said. "We hope to sell 3,000 copies through our Web site, local bookstores and a launch party. Additionally there will be other products such as CDs and artwork from the work."

With other printings, "Create for Our Children" hopes to help other children's groups in need, such as the Idaho Food Bank's Kids Café as well as the Women and Children's Alliance, which helps women and children who are victims of domestic violence.

"It is the job of our board members to help bring to the table children's groups in need," Kristen said. "There is an endless list, but we need to raise awareness."

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