By Limarie Cabrera This year the 2019 Data Bulletin is celebrating its fifth year of publication. There was this pressure – much of it self-generated – to say something different, and this year, I was very much afraid that I … Read More & Comment
See behind-the-scenes photos of our journey as we created their first children’s book ‘Wendy Finds A Home In Westchester.”
Like so many great ideas, our first children’s book started at the kitchen table. Rebekah and Onya came to Ilana’s parents’ house to see how they felt about our ambitious idea to write a story from a child’s perspective about child and youth homelessness in Westchester. We were blessed that they offered their time and support as her father, Mort, is a retired journalist and her mother, Anita, is a retired art teacher and artist skilled at painting faces that brimmed with emotion. After they said ‘yes’ and Anita offered to donate illustrations for our short book, WCA staff went to work crafting a story that is simple enough to tell a child but about the complex issue of homelessness. We went through many drafts and realized the vast difference between writing for advocacy and writing a creative story. During the creative process, the Fleischner’s became like extended family and generously stopped by our White Plains office to share sketches and give helpful feedback. Wendy’s story became a labor of love for everyone (even their dog Bella.) Wendy’s story was finally published with Anita’s beautiful illustrations in November 2019 under the title ‘Wendy Finds A Home in Westchester.’ We were anxious and proud as we sent copies to our supporters, partners, and friends.
Our blessings multiplied when actor Michael Boatman agreed to read our story for a video reading that would be shared on YouTube and online. His comforting voice and twinkling personality added life to Wendy’s story and helped us reach a larger audience. Limarie directed the taping using our own makeshift setup of a recording studio in Rebekah’s office. Onya helped by making the script easier to read and kept our audience in mind as she taped another version for social media. When it was over, Michael Boatman chatted with WCA staff and shared many insights into his experiences of relaying difficult topics to his kids and the inner workings of the entertainment industry. You can see and hear the whole book as Michael Boatman reads to you “Wendy Finds a Home in Westchester.”
Thank you for traveling with us on our journey!
This post was written by Thomas ‘Mac’ Barreca, who spent Summer 2019 with us as an intern and is the last student to participate in the Cornell University Blumenthal Internship Program. This internship program was started and lead by WCA … Read More & Comment
It’s hard to know where to begin. There has been a steady onslaught of new policies and actions that have targeted children and families lately with little regard for the long-term implications. From the separation of children from their families … Read More & Comment
From our Executive Director [IMPORTANT UPDATE BELOW] Westchester Children’s Association (WCA) is Westchester County’s only children’s advocacy organization focused on the welfare of children ages 0 to 25 and their families. We feel compelled to respond to the impact that … Read More & Comment
On December 6, the US Census Bureau released the 2013-17 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates and I got excited! The American Community Survey (aka “ACS”) covers over 40 social, economic, housing and demographic topics and it’s ripe for advocacy analysis. Unlike the … Read More & Comment
When my daughter was in kindergarten, she was asked to talk about what her parents did for a living. At the time, we were residing in New York City, in a tiny two bedroom apartment across the street from the … Read More & Comment
In 2013, the Westchester Children’s Association launched the Vote for Kids campaign that aims to elevate Westchester’s children and youth to the top of the public agenda among candidates, elected officials, media and the general public during the upcoming elections. … Read More & Comment