Class of 1991
(From WSAW TV 7) A magnitude seven earthquake hit the country more than five months ago.
Now, the teacher is hoping by selling this book, it will help raise money to continue with relief efforts.
Kristin Martell says she felt helpless watching the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti, especially when she saw all of the children.
She says, "It was devastating, it was frustrating."
Fluent in French, Kristin says she immediately called local organizations to travel there to help.
"There were so many people there already, so I was told no, it was agonizing and I sat down and tried to figure out how I could help. I could send money, but it seemed like I could do a little bit more and I got inspired and I sat down and wrote a poem and my daughter sat down next to me for inspiration," says Kristin.
The poem turned into a children's book called "Haiti Mon Amour."
She says, "It was written in French because Haiti speaks French and Creole."
It focuses on how the country is rebuilding after the disaster. They come to surface again and they feel the warmth of the sun and the love of the island and the waves and the birds greet them again and the birds come back to guard them, it's still safe and comfortable."
A Stevens Point publishing company, Worzalla Publishing, printed 1,500 copies of the book for free.
For every book sold, $5 will be donated to the Red Cross Haiti Relief Effort.
"We're hoping that this can just continue the effort to help Haiti rebuild because it's not going to take a few months or a year, this is going to take many years and that was important to both the Red Cross and myself."
This wasn't the first children's book written by Kristin, her very first book was written as a project in Mrs. Field's English class at Sunnyslope High School. Her years at Sunnyslope inspired Kristin to seek a career in education which eventually lead to creating her own Foreign Language Program for Elementary Educators. In hopes to bring foreign language learning to all elementary programs accross the nation, she has created a website dedicated to her language program, books and videos, www.languapoly.com. She currently works with the University of Wisconsin Stevens Point in their Foreign Language Department on children's programs for the community and in the classroom.
Her dedication to education and spirit of volunteerism stems from her time at Sunnyslope, she is very grateful for the oportunities and experiences SHS gave to her.
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