Janet Wilson, Author and Illustrator
Second Story Press, Biography, 2010
Suitable for Ages: 7 -12
Themes: Kids Saving the Planet, Conservation, Environmentalists, Youth Activists
Opening: Every living thing shares one home — our Earth.
Synopsis: This is a collection of stories featuring 10 children, ages 7 to 17, who are doing amazing things to save the earth. The youths live in every part of the world. Wilson says that nearly half the earth’s population is young. Many are compassionate, creative and share a love of nature. She features Ryan Hreljac from Canada who is building wells in Africa to bring people clean water…Janine Licare from Costa Rica who is saving the rainforest and its animals…Adeline Tiffanie Suwana from Indonesia whose organization, Sahabat Alam (Friends of Nature) plants coral in damaged ocean reefs and mangroves trees to prevent damage from hurricanes and natural disasters…Fang Minghe of China and his Green Eyes Group rush to the outdoor markets looking for endangered breeds of animals and secretly films the sellers and reports them to the police…Sam Levin from the USA who has created a student run organic school vegetable garden which supplies the school’s cafeteria with fresh fruits and vegetables and donates food to needy families….and William Kamkwamba of Malawi, who built a windmill to harness the wind and create electricity for his village. These are only a few of the inspiring stories.
Why I like this book: This is an exciting book for Earth Day, April 22! I have watched children activists grow in numbers worldwide for years. Janet Wilson has written a very empowering book about young people who have a strong desire to create a healthier world. Each two-page spread includes a portrait of each child by Wilson, photographs of their work, quotes and information about their projects. In the opening of Our Earth, Wilson shares a version of a traditional Aboriginal story about the Rainbow Warriors, “children who have a strong love of nature and a desire to find ways to be part of the solution.“ “They are our Rainbow Warriors. ”
Resources: Wilson devotes a section to “Kids Create!” at the end of the book where children can learn more about conservation and find ways to get involved at home, school and in their community. You can visit Janet Wilson at her website and view her other books on peace and young activists. I also learned about an organization, Kids Are Heroes, where kids are making a big difference in our world. Vivian Kirkwood, at Positive Parental Participation, introduced me to this inspiring group of kids.