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Getting by with a Little Help

by Jean Dugan
September/October 2017
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Article Link: http://www.ccie.com/article/getting-by-with-a-little-help/5023746/

All families are different. With apologies to Tolstoy, happy families are as unlike each other as are unhappy families and everyone in between, and each of them — to one degree or another — needs outside help from time to time. To that end, there must be in place a network of support robust enough for all families who need assistance. Fred Rogers called it a "neighborhood expression of care."

For the families of refugees, the journey is a scary one and those who enable them along the way deserve profound admiration and respect. Three new books (each of them beautifully and imaginatively illustrated) tell the story of three different family situations. 


In My Beautiful Birds, a boy named Sami mourns the loss of his pet pigeons as his family leaves the destruction of their town in Syria and walks many miles to the Za'atari refugee camp in Jordan. There they find new friends, a school, and a safe community of shared culture. And out of the same sky, Sami finds new beautiful birds — pigeons of course, but also yellow canaries and rose colored finches to brighten his world. Suzanne Del Rizzo's polymer and mixed media textured illustrations are astounding in their detail.

My ...

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