Children’s book with Sarnia Lambton shops

Noelle’s Gift and Hashtag Charitable are collaborating to create a children’s book highlighting businesses and organizations in Sarnia-Lambton.

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Noelle’s Gift and Hashtag Charitable are collaborating to create a children’s book that also highlights businesses and organizations in Sarnia-Lambton.

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Inspired by Tibor Gegerly’s Busy Day Busy People, which Hashtag Charitable Foundation Executive Director Rich Bouchard read as a child and then re-read with his own children, once released, the hyper-local book will showcase various career paths available to the Sarnia -Region. Once printed, the expected 5,000 copies will be distributed to young people through local school authorities.

“It gives kids a chance to see what different jobs or professions they could grow up and pursue,” Bouchard said, noting that the idea has been in the works since 2019.

“We’re trying to give them a cross-section of different industries and careers … and we’re really trying to show kids how they can grow to be huge successes,” he said, citing how former kindergarten teacher Noelle Paquette would describe her students.

Noelle’s Gift, a charity that funds grants like school supplies and lunches, was established in Paquette’s memory in 2013 to honor the legacy of the beloved teacher, who used to bring extras into her classroom for needy youth.

The book will follow a young student speaking to community members and business owners about various jobs and roles, Bouchard said. The book will also feature up to 24 local organizations and could potentially raise $75,000 to be split evenly between Noelle’s Gift and Hashtag Charitable.

The latter nonprofit, founded in 2020, helps organize fundraisers for multiple charities at once to reduce competition for limited local funds.

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Bouchard and others at the agency are also behind the social media site Hashtag Local, Year of Local Books, and Race to Erase.

“We have a number of organizations that have come on board,” Bouchard said of the uptake of the book idea so far.

He expects the book’s scope to be better known by the end of the month, noting that the companies it contains will be named and the illustrations will show the likenesses of the business owners.

Sponsors are expected to cover production and printing.

Organizations interested in participating can contact richbouchard@hashtagcharitable.com.

“Just the conversations we’ve had with potential sponsors and just general business contacts, friends or family…everyone loves the idea of ​​it,” Bouchard said.

Noelle’s Gift President Lynn Paquette said in a press release that she is excited about the partnership.

“Supporting children is at the core of everything we do and inspiring them is an important part of that,” she said. “Creating a children’s book is a project we have been discussing for many years and we look forward to getting it off the ground.”

tkula@postmedia.com

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