A few years ago I read a remarkable story about how a child with a vision changed the world. If not the world, then the lives of many people in the child’s vicinity. You’ve heard of them, too. A boy who began raising money for wells in African villages. A girl named Jenna operating massive bake sales to benefit a children’s hospice in Vancouver, BC — Jenna is a friend of our family.
But the story that struck me a while back was the story of Katie Stagliano. When she was nine years old, she received a cabbage seedling in her third grade class. She took such good care of it that it grew to be a whopping forty pounds! Someone suggested Katie donate her cabbage to the local soup kitchen, and that’s where her dream was birthed. She knew she wanted to do whatever she could to keep hunger away.
From one not-so-small cabbage grown in 2008, Katie started Katie’s Krops to encourage kids to grow vegetables for charity. In 2015, there were eighty-three gardens across the US, run by kids age nine to sixteen. Eighty-three gardens! Call Katie a world-changer! Check out Katie’s Krops. Maybe you’d like to donate or see if you can get involved in some way.
In my new Garden Grown Romance series, part of Arcadia Valley Romance, I’ve introduced a ten-year-old character named Maisie Felton. I pretended that she and Katie had been friends before Maisie and her mom moved to Arcadia Valley. Yes, I know the real Katie is now much older, so it doesn’t line up. But she was still the inspiration.
Maisie and her mom have been homeless. They’ve depended on soup kitchens and food cupboards and other forms of charity. It’s made Maisie compassionate. If you’d like to see how Maisie turned her world upside down, start reading the series with Sow in Love, part of Romance Grows in Arcadia Valley.