Thursday, May 30, 2013

MANA's New Release: "Superstorm Sandy: In the Eyes of the Children" Now Available

Seven months before a tornado ripped through Moore, Oklahoma, Superstorm Sandy destroyed parts of New Jersey and New York on October 29, 2012. Now, a new book has been released that describes the storm from the children's perspective. 

Superstorm Sandy: In the Eyes of the Childrenis a collection of essays from children who witnessed the destruction firsthand and felt – and some are still feeling – the devastating affects of the storm. Some residents are just now moving back into their rebuilt homes, while thousands of others are still homeless because their homes cannot be rebuilt or are still under reconstruction. 

In their essays, the children describe what they were doing before the storm hit,  the sights and sounds of the storm, how their homes were lost, and the pain and hearbreak they felt because of the storm. One student asked New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to "restore the shore." (Update: The Jersey Shore reopened Memorial Date weekend).

While many New York and New Jersey residents are trying to get their lives back on track, the emotional, psychological, and physical scars still remain from the storm, which flooded thousands of homes and caused dozens of death. 

Dr. Kathleen M. Woods Ignatoski's father, Harry Woods, lost his home in Mystic Island during the superstorm and she did not realize how much her 12-year-old daughter, Theresa, was affected by this event. Theresa's teacher suggested that she write a descriptive essay about how this affected her. Theresa described a place she loved to go to prior to the storm: 

The beach is one of the most enjoyable places to visit in New Jersey; you put your feet into the smooth but hot sand, jump in the freezing waves of the ocean, and find the cool-looking seashells on Long Beach Island (LBI). It's the utmost place to be but, so sadly, most of it was ruined by Hurricane Sandy.

If Theresa felt this way, how would children feel who went through the storm feel? Dr. Ignatoski decided to answer that question by asking youngsters to write about the storm from their perspective. Dr. Ignatoski is also the book's editor.

One student, Zachery Piniero, an 11-year-old from Harrison, NJ, wrote that before the storm hit the night of Oct. 29, he, his sister and his aunt were "making pasta pullanesca as a surprise dinner" for his mother because it was her birthday. They eventually had to leave their house because of flooding and stayed at his grandmother's house. He also did not go to school:

Although Hurricane Sandy gave us days off from school, the scary situation I experienced was not worth the time away from my classroom.

Proceeds from the sale of Superstorm Sandy: In the Eyes of the Children will go to St. Theresa's Catholic Church in Tuckerton, NJ. The church is still helping residents its surrounding neighborhood that was hit hard by the storm. Residents are still in need of basic household items and personal hygiene products – and homes! 

While most of the media attention is now focused in Oklahoma, this book is a way of helping the general public remember storm victims who are no longer in the media spotlight but still need basic household items and clothing. 

Let us continue to keep both Superstorm Sandy survivors and tornado victims in Oklahoma  in our thoughts and prayers. 

Click HERE to purchase Superstorm Sandy: In the Eyes of the Children.

Click HERE to find out more about "Create a Book"© Fundraiser.

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