Literacy Connects of Tucson understands the power of story. They’re gathering stories, poems, drawings and reflections on the theme “January 8th Tragedy and Beyond” through Wed, Feb. 8 as part of their “Stories That Soar!” program, established a decade ago to foster a strong and civil society through storytelling.
Stories from the entire Arizona community — any age and any language — are welcome. Children, teens and adults are all encouraged to participate by creating poems, works of fiction or non-fiction, or drawings. Some stories will become content for a “Stories That Soar!” theatrical production, and all stories will “assist the process of creating a permanent January 8th Memorial,” according to Stacey Wong with the Arizona Commission on the Arts.
“Stories that Soar!” is a literacy and performing arts program that “brings children’s original stories to life through the talents of professional performers.” By “transforming words and ideas into high quality artistic expression,” the program inspires creativity, promotes active literacy and builds engaged communities.
The program helps children to “realize their words and ideas have meaning and power beyond themselves.” Creating an artistic work inspired by caring, engaged citizens seems a fitting tribute to all those affected by the Tuscon tragedy of Jan. 8, 2011. Especially nine-year-old Christina Green.
Green, who was born on Sept. 11, 2001, was one of six people killed when a gunman opened fire during U.S. Representative Gabrielle Gifford’s “Congress on Your Corner” event at a local grocery store. Green served on the student council at her school — and attended Gifford’s constituent gathering with family friend Susan Hileman, who knew of Green’s interest in politics.
We should all seek to follow in Green’s footsteps. Being curious, informed and engaged citizens. Taking time out of our busy lives to get involved and make a difference. Transforming reflections about the Tucson tragedy — and beyond — into works of art is one way we can all show just how much we cherish citizens like Christina.
Note: Click here to learn more about “Stories That Soar!” and here to learn more about other Literacy Connects projects — including “The Big Read” (Feb. 7), “Laps for Literacy” (Feb. 18) and the “Tucson Festival of Books” (March 10 & 11). Click here for details on submitting “Tuscon Tragedy and Beyond” artwork.
Coming up: Let’s library!