Saturday, April 23, 2011

Espwa Pou Ayiti! Finally, a Haitian Kreyol translation of Hope for Haiti

Check it! I am so stoked!

Words are not enough to express my gratitude to the Pearson Foundation, Penguin Young Readers Group, and On My Mind Foundation, for making this happen. I am flying down to Haiti next week to bring kids this translation. I saw the expressions on the faces of the children I showed the English version to. They were like, "Hey! That kid looks like me. Hey! That looks like Haiti!" But they still required someone to translate the book on the spot. But now they get to experience it in a much more personal and meaningful. This could not have happened without Joanis Normil, president of On My Mind Foundation, who has skillfully translated the text into Kreyol.

As I reflect on my career and the twists and turns it takes me down, I admit that it would be nice to sell lots of books and earn royalties so that I can buy food for my kids and pay my bills. But in all truth, it is more important for me to be able to use the book as a tool for change in this world we live in. I am grateful for how my meager talents have been transformed through the work of so many, into a vehicle for hope and change and inspiration. This is collaboration at its best. From the editorial skills of Susan Kochan, the design brilliance of Cecilia Yung, art director of Putnam, and the encouragement and guidance of Rubin Pfeffer, my agent.

I also want to thank all of you, my dear friends, who have donated items or money in support of the trip next week. I will be buying the last of the soccer equipment on Monday and whatever money is left will come down with me and be left with the amazing organizations we work with in Haiti. Your generosity inspires me that not all hope is lost in the world. Not yet, anyhow.

Here are some links. Please support these organizations that strive to bring education and hope to the youth.

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