Anne Frank Tree Project Community Dinner and Author Visit
The Anne Frank Tree Project welcomed author Linda Sue Park to Southern Cayuga on May 20 for the annual Anne Frank Tree celebration and community dinner. Special thanks go to the project committee members for organizing this wonderful event, along with many other events during the past spring. The evening began with an award ceremony to acknowledge Sydney Hasenjager, Paul Simkin, and Jane Simkin for their generosity and their individual efforts to support others within our community.
Linda Sue Park then shared the story of the lost boys of Sudan in A Long Walk to Water. Linda Sue is the daughter of Korean immigrants who moved to the Rochester area when she was a young child. A life-long writer, Linda Sue graduated from Stanford University and is a 2002 Newbery Medal winning author for her book A Single Shard. A Long Walk to Water has become a popular read for middle school students, which tells the story of the conflict in Southern Sudan through the eyes of two young people.
“The New York Times bestseller A Long Walk to Water begins as two stories, told in alternating sections, about two eleven-year-olds in Sudan, a girl in 2008 and a boy in 1985. The girl, Nya, is fetching water from a pond that is two hours’ walk from her home: she makes two trips to the pond every day. The boy, Salva, becomes one of the "lost boys" of Sudan, refugees who cover the African continent on foot as they search for their families and for a safe place to stay. Enduring every hardship from loneliness to attack by armed rebels to contact with killer lions and crocodiles, Salva is a survivor, and his story goes on to intersect with Nya’s in an astonishing and moving way.”
As a follow up to the story of Salva, our students will have the chance to meet the folks from the non-profit group Water for South Sudan. The group was founded by Salva and has already raised over $836,000 and installed 279 wells in South Sudan. Special thanks go to the Anne Frank Tree Project for helping our students learn how the actions of a few individuals can make the world a better place.