A new picture book I illustrated is now in print: Sparky and Jimmy: Sparky's Uganda Adventure. This is a book that Guardian Angel published for Spark Worldwide, an organization that helps children in many places around the world. Two of their ten orphanages are in Uganda: one for babies and one for children. They try very hard to place children in loving homes first, then the orphanage as a second option.
It was an incredible experience working on these pictures. The story is by Leanna Brewer, the founder of Spark Worldwide. It was like I felt her heart for these kids as I drew and painted. Her heart and hearts of all the Spark team are Huge for children, truly filled with a love that longs to give. Hearing her talk about the children she comes in contact with challenges me to allow my heart to be enlarged for others, especially children. I think sometimes, we see pictures of kids in other countries and feel like it is overwhelming or that our little gift really wont make much of a difference. As I worked on this book, I realized that is just not true. Helping one child have shoes, one child have a home or new pair of clothes or school book, makes a difference in that one life. One life is incredibly valuable. I realized that this past year also as my dad died. Helping care for him for several months before his death, I came to see more clearly how valuable one person is.
Leanna also had a vision for this book to be filled with joy, the joy that children are experiencing through the love of God that Spark Worldwide is giving. I think she did a beautiful job of sharing with very young children a glimpse of what another child in another country might experience in a way that is not scary or a big downer. It is loaded with hope and love, just like the Spark Team's hearts are.
SPARK: Saving, Protecting, And Raising Kids: www.sparkworldwide.org
The book can be ordered on Amazon: Sparky and Jimmy: Sparky's Uganda Adventure and also on the Gaurdian Angel website. There is also a companion coloring book that can be found on the Guardian Angel website.