WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water’s Website and Facebook Page Are Now Live!

Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

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PaperTigers Outreach has moved forward with a new name, WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water,  and a new website www.waterbridgeoutreach.org. Our vision remains the same: to give children in developing communities hope for the future through nourishing their minds and bodies with books and water.

WaterBridge Outreach

Waterbridge Outreach: Books +Water is a small nonprofit organization using a grassroots approach to raise funds for new projects on an individual basis.  We donate books in English and local languages and fund clean waterand sanitation projects in communities and villages in the developing world. We seek to promote multicultural literacy, education, and development that will make a long term impact, one book and one water project at a time, while building effective partnerships with local communities. Visit the website and our Facebook page to learn more about our recent book + water projects in India, Malaysia, Haiti, the Philippines and more! In addition learn more about our Writers for WaterBridge program in which award winning authors are working with us on our mission. 

 

WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water is a California 501 (c) (3) organization that relies on public and private support. Please help WaterBridge Outreach build a sustainable future in providing multicultural books to schools and libraries, while engaging with local communities to obtain and maintain access to clean water in areas of need around the world. Make a U.S. tax deductible contribution now, which will directly support our books and water projects. Your support will make all the difference in reducing the effects of disease, while nourishing both mind and body. Click here to learn more and if you have any questions or comments, give us a shout at info(at)waterbridgeoutreach(dot).org

 

Highlighting Feedback from WaterBridge Outreach Participants Redwood Shores Elementary School (USA)

Friday, April 12th, 2013

waterbridgeOutreachSealFinalNew on our WaterBridge Outreach site (formerly known as Spirit of PaperTigers Outreach) feedback from Redwood Shores Elementary School in Redwood City, CA, USA. Grade 3  teacher Ms. Jennifer Lo and her students have participated in our Outreach program for the past two years and and recently sent us their feedback  on the  2012 Spirit of PaperTigers Book Set. All the feedback from Redwood Shores School can be read by clicking here. To give you a little preview Ms. Lo wrote in part:

My students used this year’s books along with last year’s books that you sent to participate in their first round of literature circles. Before their literature circle meeting, students read the books to themselves and completed a few comprehension tasks that they would bring to their literature circle meetings to share with their group members. After their meetings, students wrote reviews about the books which can be viewed on our class blog.

These books are an invaluable resource to my class as I was able to teach the kids how to have meaningful conversations with others about what they read and learn about other cultures and places.

Here’s a video of short clips I was able to record during the literature circle meetings.

paw_sm3 PaperTigers is an international program sponsored by PaperTigers: Books+Water, a California 501(c) (3) organization that relies on public and private support. Please help PaperTigers build a sustainable future by making a tax deductible contribution in direct support of its programs. Your gift will make a difference, and we thank you for your generous support! For donation information click here.

Feedback of Ms. Vin Del Rosario, School Librarian, Laguna BelAir School, City of Santa Rosa, Philippines on PaperTigers: Books+Water Book Sets

Friday, February 1st, 2013

Concluding our focus on Laguna BelAir School and their involvement in our WaterBridge Outreach program we present the feedback of the school  librarian Ms. Vin Del Rosario.

The books donated by the PaperTigers: Books+Water presented a very suitable opportunity for me to propose a reading program for the Learning Resource Center (LRC).

I am a School Librarian who oversees the operations of the Library and Learning Resource Center of Laguna BelAir School, a K-12 private educational institution located in the City of Santa Rosa, Laguna,Philippines.

This reading program was spearheaded by the LRC in partnership with the Class Advisers and Reading Teachers of students in Grades 2 to 6. One of the aims of this reading program was for students to encourage one another to read the Spirit of PaperTigers (SPT) books in the library to reach the class reading goal. The reading goal was determined by the number of students in the class, the assigned 3 SPT titles and percentage of expected participating students. To reach the class reading goal faster, more students must participate in the reading program.

This SPT Reading Program gave me more chances to reach out to the clients of the library. While the reading program was up and running, the students would wait for me every morning during their Class Routine time for the distribution of the Mini Book Certificates. These small pieces of paper certified that the student earned points for his/her class by submitting correct answers using the Book Completion Form (BCF). (more…)

Feedback of Mr. Romel Obinario, Academic Team Head and Institutional Values Formation Program Head Laguna BelAir School on PaperTigers: Books+Water Book Sets

Thursday, January 31st, 2013
Continuing our focus on WaterBridge Outreach participants Laguna BelAir School, today we feature the inspiring feedback of Mr. Romel Obinario, Academic Team Head and Institutional Values Formation Program Head.

At the heart of every PaperTigers book is a message for all of humanity. The message each book conveys is relevant, timeless, and transcends the boundaries set by current economic, political, or cultural constructs that continue to impinge on the way peoples of the world interact today.

We at Laguna BelAir School have realized the affinity between our core values and those of the PaperTigers (PT) organization, as conveyed in the PT books that the organization has sent us. By sharing the PT books with our students, we are also imparting our core values in a way that is not awkward and forced. Through the books, they may realize that the things we say we value are not simply words to be memorized but are ideals that other people cherish and live out. Through their constant exposure to these wonderful books, and their continuous experiences in the school’s different advocacies, they may truly become what we wish them to be – stewards for a better world.

Thank you, Paper Tigers, for involving us in your outreach program. We share in Wangari Maathai’s (Planting the Trees of Kenya) advocacy of caring for the environment by planting trees and in her belief in women and in communities working together to bring about much-needed reforms. We are inspired by Kojo’s (One Hen) example of thrift and of making a difference one small step at a time. The way we view people with cultures or beliefs other than ours is challenged by the way friendship is forged between Abaani and Haki (First Come the Zebra), thereby promoting peaceful coexistence. And we are truly inspired by the boy (A Child’s Garden: A Story of Hope) who despite all adversity finds hope for a better future in a war-ravaged land.

Continuing our focus on Laguna BelAir School and their involvement in our WaterBridge Outreach Program.

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Today we continue our focus on Laguna BelAir School, located in Santa Rosa City, Philippines, and their involvement in our WaterBridge Outreach Project. The first post in the series can be read here.

Working with Ms. Vin Del Rosario, Laguna BelAir’s head librarian, PaperTigers sent 2010 and 2011 book sets to the school. These book sets were used by Ms. Del Rosario in implementing an inspiring  reading program for her students in grades 2 to 6. More information about the reading program can be found here and a video of the program can be watched here.

Feedback on the book sets is a crucial part of our project as we want to share the responses of  teachers and librarians, children and parents, to the book sets with others around the world. Feedback can be  like ripples in a pond, spreading out across the globe, and one never knows what hearts and minds might be moved, and lives touched, by the book sets. Ms. Del Rosario went above and beyond in providing us with feedback from the students and teachers at her school and as our Feedback Coordinator Dr. Barbara Bundy recently stated “We are awed and also very grateful to all of you at Laguna BelAir School for treasuring these books and using them to engage your pupils and to promote both reading and cultural literacy on the one hand, and the values of your own school on the other hand.”

Following is some of the wonderful feedback we received from Laguna BelAir students. Click here to read all the feedback submitted.

Biblioburro

Please read the book because it is full of lessons about life. I’ve learned that one way to help solve poverty in the country is by sharing your knowledge to less fortunate ones, like what Luis did in the story.

Luis and I are both book lovers. We like to read books to other people. We are inspired with the stories we read.

Rain School

The part that I liked the most was when the students are building their school. I was amazed how the children who are so young would volunteer and help to build their school.

I recommend this book because I know that the readers would love it and enjoy it. They will be happy to know the culture of Africa.

A Child’s Garden

I recommend this book because it is a story of hope and undying love for the environment. It is also a nice story because even though the soldiers destroyed the plant, the boy did not lose hope. That is a good example for children like us.

Planting the Trees of Kenya

The similarity between my way of life and Wangari’s is that we both aim to help people in the best way we can. I admire Wangari because she helped others to rise from poverty by giving the people seedlings, teaching them how to plant, and telling people how to plant more instead of cutting and removing trees.

The Storyteller’s Candle

My favorite character is Pura Belpre because she is a talented storyteller. She has the ability to motivate and inspire others to read books.

First Comes The Zebra

My favorite part of the story is when the sun rising over the grassland in Kenya.

Click here to read all the feedback submitted.

Laguna BelAir School (Philippines) and their involvement in our WaterBridge Outreach Project ~ Part 1

Monday, January 28th, 2013

This promises to be a special week here on the blog as we spend the next few days highlighting feedback from one of our WaterBridge Outreach participants:  Laguna BelAir School in Santa Rosa City, Philippines.

Our WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water Nourishing the Mind and Body program (formerly known as Spirit of PaperTigers Outreach)  seeks to further the overall goals of the PaperTigers Program: bridging cultures and opening minds, promoting greater understanding and empathy among young people from different backgrounds, countries, and ethnicities. More specifically, WBOutreach works to advance education through books and reading, and development through clean and accessible water.

Since 2009,  the “Books” portion of WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water has seen us put  specially chosen book sets into the hands of young readers through schools and libraries, encouraging literacy, developing understanding and making reading a lifelong habit.  Each year’s  set is comprised of books that we feel provide “multicultural” or “trans-cultural” stories that promote awareness of, knowledge about, and positive acceptance of “the other” in ways children can learn and enjoy. We are convinced of the crucial role of literacy and reading in an education that fosters understanding and empathy.

Laguna BelAir School has participated in our Book Set program for the past 3 years under the guidance of  the school’s amazing head librarian, Ms. Vin Del Rosario. Using the books Ms. Del Rosario implemented an inspiring  reading program for her students in grades 2 to 6.  Ms. Del Rosario writes:

You have chosen quality book sets, books that contain values that are important to us. It was easy for us to share the books with our students as the stories and illustrations “capture” our students’ interests.

I initiated the PaperTigers reading program to create an avenue to encourage our students to read the books in a fun way. It is also the library’s way of helping the English subject teachers to get feedback on the PaperTigers books.

This reading program is a class effort. It encourages class participation. The more these students read in a class, the faster they can reach their reading goal. Reading points were assigned to different PaperTigers books. Class advisers and Reading teachers encourage students to participate in the reading program.

The students visit the library to read the PaperTigers books during their snacks and lunch break. After reading a book, the student is given a “book completion form”, which is a small piece of paper with two or three questions about the book. Students earn points for each form they complete and are awarded a “mini book certificate”.

Originally, I had intended to run the reading program up to November 2012. However, due to the overwhelming responses of the students, we completed it by the end of September!

We’ve been posting Laguna BelAir’s written feedback on the book sets on our Outreach page here.  Earlier this month we received this video from the school. Such a thrill for us to see the students and staff of the school engaging with the books we sent and I think we can all agree that Ms. Del Rosario’s reading program was a HUGE success! Enjoy!

WaterBridge Outreach, Water in Multicultural Children’s Books and Project Splash Asia!

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

As 2012 draws to a close and I reflect on our website themes over the past year, one of my favorites was The Theme of Water in Multicultural Children’s Books . We decided to do this focus in part because of the crucial role that water plays in our WaterBridge Outreach project (WBO) which provides donations of new multicultural children’s books to schools and libraries, while engaging with local communities to obtain access to clean water in areas of need throughout the world. In his recent PaperTigers 10th Anniversary article,  Executive Director Dr. Peter Coughlan wrote about the history of PaperTigers and how WBO came to be:

The most recent development in the PaperTigers story is – alongside the main site and the blog, which continue through from the second and third phases – WaterBridge Outreach, as summed up in the phrase Books+Water: Nourishing the Mind and Body. This springs from the desire firstly, to put books into the hands of children, especially in areas of need around the world – multicultural books that children can enjoy and that help open young minds and hearts to the world beyond their immediate experience. Secondly, I have been lecturing for some time at a college of the University of London in the area of applied ethics and, specifically, about the challenges facing our world at the nexus of water, food and energy in the context of climate change/global warming. Literacy and reading yes, but the lack of clean water and basic sanitation is a significant impediment to education, especially the education of girls, in too many parts of the world. Thinking about this led to the decision to expand our programs in 2009/2010 under the banner of PaperTigers: Books+Water, thus including not only the PaperTigers site and blog but also the practical WaterBridge Outreach programs – books and water here being specific expressions of the insight that education and the meeting of basic human needs must move forward together.

Since WBO’s inception we have been involved in various water projects in :

Matènwa Community Learning Center ~ Lagonav, Haiti

Tamilnadu ViIlage Outreach (TVO) Tuition Schools ~ Tamilnadu, India 

and Kiphire, Nagaland, India

As we move into 2013 we hope to further develop our projects in the above-mentioned areas as well as look at the possible development of similar projects in Guatemala and South Sudan, and work with Navajo and Hopi colleagues in education about water and water needs in Native American areas of Arizona. Dr. Coughlan will be going to Nagaland and Tamil Nadu in December this year to develop our projects, and our Outreach Coordinator Theresa Gee will be going to Arizona. Writers Gail Tsukiyama and Mary Roach will be joining Dr. Coughlan in India – the beginnings of an initiative that Gail hopes to develop as Writers for WaterBridge Outreach.

Exciting news for the coming year is that 2013 has been declared the United Nations International Year of the Water! The year will highlight the history of successful water cooperation initiatives, as well as identify issues on water education, water diplomacy, transboundary water management, financing cooperation, national/international legal frameworks, and more!  Community and school programs in many countries will include reading, performing and creating water-themed stories. Water-themed children’s stories will also be highlighted at the 2013 Asian Festival of Children’s Content in Singapore under the banner Project Splash Asia!  PaperTigers is working with The National Book Development Council of Singapore (NBDCS) and Dr. Myra Garces-Bacsal to compile a bibliography of favourite water-themed children’s stories from or about the Asian region. If you have a title to suggest we would love to hear from you! Email me at corinne(at)papertigers(dot)org

New Feedback on our WaterBridge Outreach Site from Laguna BelAir School, Santa Rosa City, Philippines

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

New on our WaterBridge Outreach site (formerly known as Spirit of PaperTigers Outreach) feedback from Laguna BelAir School in Santa Rosa City, Philippines. Laguna BelAir School has participated in our Outreach program for the past two years and and recently sent us their feedback  on the 2011 Spirit of PaperTigers Book Set which was comprised of the following three books:

Biblioburro, written and illustrated by Jeanette Winter (Beach Lane Books, 2010);

A Child’s Garden: A Story of Hope, written and illustrated by Michael Foreman (Walker Books/Candlewick Press, 2009);

Rain School, written and illustrated by James Rumford (Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, 2010).

Head Librarian Ms. Vin Del Rosario wrote:

I am pleased to inform you of our on-going library reading program using the PaperTigers books you have donated to our school. This reading program involves the students from 2nd grade to 6th grade.

I initiated the PaperTigers reading program to create an avenue to encourage our students to read the books in a fun way. It is also the library’s way of helping the English subject teachers to get feedback on the PaperTigers books.

This reading program is a class effort. It encourages class participation. The more these students read in a class, the faster they can reach their reading goal. Reading points were assigned to different PaperTigers books. Class advisers and Reading teachers encourage students to participate in the reading program.

The students visit the library to read the PaperTigers books during their snacks and lunch break. After reading a book, the student is given a “book completion form”, which is a small piece of paper with two or three questions about the book. Students earn points for each form they complete and are awarded a “mini book certificate”.

Originally, I had intended to run the reading program up to November 2012. However, due to the overwhelming responses of the students, we completed it by the end of September!

For our teachers, you will be pleased to know that our Academic Team Head has given the instruction that each one must choose a PaperTigers book for integration in their lessons within this school year.

To learn more about the WaterBridge Outreach program and to read feedback from the participants, click here.

Highlighting Feedback from 2011 WaterBridge Outreach Participant: Dharma Chakkra Child Foundation Library, Sri Lanka

Friday, November 23rd, 2012

Our WaterBridge Outreach: Books + Water Nourishing the Mind and Body program (formerly known as Spirit of PaperTigers Outreach)  seeks to further the overall goals of the PaperTigers Program: bridging cultures and opening minds, promoting greater understanding and empathy among young people from different backgrounds, countries, and ethnicities. More specifically, WBOutreach works to advance education through books and reading, and development through clean and accessible water.

Today on the blog we are highlighting feedback from WBOutreach participant Dharma Chakkra Child Foundation Library located in the Dharma Chakkra Children’s Home in Weedagama, Sri Lanka. Established in 1998, the home provides housing and education for approximately 100 orphaned boys as well as for boys from unstable homes. In 2008 a second children’s home was opened exclusively for girls. Nia Murphy was instrumental in getting a 2011 Book Set to the Dharma Chakkra Child Foundation Library and  for providing us with this feedback:

The books were put in the children’s shared library. Dharma Chakkra has two hostels, one for the girls and then another, about 200 metres away and behind a wall, for the boys. The library is in the boys’ hostel. When I was last at the home the library was open in the evenings for the boys to use freely. Since then they’ve decided to shut it except at weekends when they have library time and English classes. I was told the books were used by the English teacher during these classes. However it was felt the books were a bit difficult for some of the children at the home, many of whom are still struggling with Sinhala, the local language. This is mostly true of the boys but the girls, who unfortunately have less access to the library, are at a higher standard. In hindsight I think a donation only for the girls’ hostel might have been a good idea. This was my mistake.

The overriding feedback was actually about the visuals: that the books showed children things they don’t normally see in ‘normal’ (read affordable) English or Sinhala books. Many of the books they have in the library are very old and extremely out of date. The affordable English books on the market in Sri Lanka are often things like The Radiant Way, which is a very dated old English sort of publication with smiling white children in high socks. Very simply, seeing children in picture books with brown skin is a rarity. So they were particularly excited about this, and the fact the children were seeing worlds not too dissimilar to their own but ones not normally presented in children’s books.

Click here to read the rest of Nia’s report.

“PaperTigers 10th Anniversary” by Founder and Executive Director Peter Coughlan

Friday, November 16th, 2012

Rounding off our 10th Anniversary celebrations (apart, of course, from the results of our Draw, which will be announced on Monday), we bring you a Personal View written by the Founder of PaperTigers, Executive Director Peter Coughlan: PaperTigers’ 10th Anniversary. In the article, Peter gives some of the background to how PaperTigers came into being, complimenting founding Editor Elisa Oreglia’s Personal View published last month.

Peter brings the different phases in the history of PaperTigers up to the present.  Here is what he says about WaterBridge Outreach, the continuation of what was until recently called our Spirit of PaperTigers Outreach:

The most recent development in the PaperTigers story is – alongside the main site and the blog, which continue through from the second and third phases – WaterBridge Outreach, as summed up in the phrase Books+Water: Nourishing the Mind and Body. This springs from the desire firstly, to put books into the hands of children, especially in areas of need around the world – multicultural books that children can enjoy and that help open young minds and hearts to the world beyond their immediate experience. Secondly, I have been lecturing for some time at a college of the University of London in the area of applied ethics and, specifically, about the challenges facing our world at the nexus of water, food and energy in the context of climate change/global warming. Literacy and reading yes, but the lack of clean water and basic sanitation is a significant impediment to education, especially the education of girls, in too many parts of the world. Thinking about this led to the decision to expand our programs in 2009/2010 under the banner of PaperTigers: Books+Water, thus including not only the PaperTigers site and blog but also the practical WaterBridge Outreach programs – books and water here being specific expressions of the insight that education and the meeting of basic human needs must move forward together.

Read the whole of Peter’s Personal View here.