Note from Krista: I am at my kids' school twice a week helping out. I've been fortunate to be able to share with several classes at the school about Africa also. One little girl, Anika, came up to me weeks after I had spoken to her class and told me something about painting for Africa. Her face was all lit up and she was so proud. Wasn't sure what she was referring to though, and to be honest - I probably simply smiled and nodded. Fortunately - her mom found me on Facebook this week and I found out the story behind the painting! I was floored! I had to share Anika as our person this Friday who is making a difference! This 7 year old has heart! Below her mom responds for Anika - but first here is Anika's story in her mom's words...
"Anika is my seven year old daughter. Anika came home from school one day very upset as she had seen a presentation at school about a trip to Kenya. This presentation was Anika's first real exposure to the issues of poverty in Africa and lack of clean drinking water. I found my daughter in her room crying that evening. I could see that she felt helpless and could not grasp that children suffer due to disease and starvation. Initially Anika had asked if she could send some of her clothing. I explained that the issues were far more complex than sending some dresses.............but.....that one person, or one little girl could make a difference with one action and that one small gesture connects to another which can create change in this world. I asked Anika what was she "good " at, whereby she advised she was a good dancer and a good artist. We agreed that she would paint a picture and auction that piece to raise money for a charity. Anika researched on her own and found the "tree of life" and the word UBUNTU which translates to human kindness. She then got to work on her painting. We found a local charity, TIN ROOF GLOBAL, which educates students for an understanding of global water issues. They provide water systems plus sanitation and hygiene education globally. They drill wells and teach rainwater harvesting improving health and adaptive water solutions from as close as six nations to as far as Africa. 100% of the money donated will be given to Tin Roof Global to assist with their work toward clean water initiatives. A charitable tax receipt will be given by Tin Roof to the highest bidder. Bidding opens May 1st at 9am and closes May 31st at 9am. Please share and let this little girls dream of helping other children become a reality....and a lesson for us all."
You can view the online event HERE. Currently her painting's highest bid is at $500 and a couple people have stepped up to donate $100 each as well. One 7 year old girl making a difference! Way to go Anika!!
ANIKA is my 7 yr old daughter. She has a heart so big...so special that I have no words. She constantly asks me what she can do to help other people whether it's down the street or across the world. One fun fact about Anika is she loves to dance...She dances more than she walks!!!
JustOne Way to Give Back
Anika paints to raise money for charity. Anika gives her clothes and other items away regularly to help others. Her innate desire to help tells me she is a game changer.....this wee person is going to make a difference. She already has heart.
I can speak for her because she tells me that she feels sad unless she does something to help. She has a good solid character and she is so grounded for such a young girl.
JustOne Thing Learned
Giving helps Anika feel involved and more importantly it empowers her. I think often children feel a sense of helplessness in this crazy world....her creating and giving offers her a sense of control and achievement.....pride and sharing
Anika's teachers...media...Anika pays attention. So if you tell her there is a need she immediately asks herself if she can do something. That's when she comes to myself or her father
DON'T FORGET HOW POWERFUL OUR CHILDREN ARE!! Empower them with love and knowledge. Give them the tools to make a difference from where they sit. They will amaze and inspire. Anika's Rainbow is a perfect example of how what is said or taught to a child impacts them. It's simply beautiful to give a child creative freedom to do what they innately want to do....learn and do good things:)