Schrock, Jan West. Give A Goat. Illustrated by Aileen Darragh. Published by Tilbury House.
You may be wondering...'How can reading a picture book in one country make a difference to a family in need living thousands of miles away? And what does a goat have to do with it anyway?' Let me introduce you to this gem of a picture book--Give A Goat. It is the story of how you and me--regardless of age--can make a difference in the world.
In a way, Give A Goat is a story about a story. When fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Rowell read aloud a book, Beatrice's Goat, she inspired her class to do something. The story was about the Heifer International organization. They give animals--goats, ducks, water buffalo, etc. to individuals in need. These animals are the gift that keep on giving. They provide for the family long-term. And are the first step to creating better lives. She didn't read it aloud with the mindset--I must teach my class how to be compassionate--it was rainy; they were restless. But the results were the same. Inspired to act, they began researching and planning. They wanted to give a goat. They wanted to make a difference.
The book shows their story--how reading inspired and prompted them to act--it gives a behind-the-scenes look at compassion and generosity. Something you don't find in every picture book. I also like the details--how this took planning and teamwork. It shows them following through on a project. It's easy to be 'inspired' but more difficult to stay inspired when it comes down to commiting yourself to something.
I enjoyed this one and I think you will too. Heifer International has a gift catalog you can browse. Consider giving yourself or your loved one a feel-good-gift of giving to someone else. Goats are $120. But flocks of chicks, ducks, and geese are only $20. (There are many other animals as well.)
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