Alex Olson is not your ordinary second grade student. She took a book writing project and turned it into a charitable fundraising opportunity that benefits Save a Forgotten Equine (SAFE), a nonprofit based in Woodinville that rescues neglected and abandoned horses and rehabilitates them.
Alex is a student in Ms. Jones’ class at Bear Creek Elementary and is the daughter of Jen and Keith Olson, of Woodinville.
When her parents saw a creative writing enrichment class called Aspiring Authors, being hosted by Grasshopper Enrichment Education after school at Bear Creek, they offered Alex, who loves to write, the opportunity to take the class.
“Each child writes and illustrates a book of their own. Typically at the end of class, we provide the children with one copy of their published book. It is pretty amazing that these kids can put together beautifully written and illustrated books in our brief 12 hours of class time, but they all do,” wrote Shawna Bold of Grasshopper Enrichment Education by email.
Most students take their book home to share with their family. But, Alex decided to take this one step further and use her book to help raise money for SAFE.
Alex’s book, “Isabelle and Brownie Go Around The World,” started out with an idea.
“Then I wrote a sloppy copy of the story. Then the class edited each other’s story. Then my mom typed the story in and printed it out for me. Then I drew pictures on all of the pages. Next I made the cover for the book, and then we published it,” Alexa wrote by email, with the help of her mom.
The story is about a little girl named Isabelle and her horse named Brownie. They travel around the world to France, China and Colombia and compete in horse shows.
“What makes Alex special is that she took this process one step further. She decided to make extra copies of the book she wrote and sell them to raise money for SAFE,” Bold wrote.
Alex put her book up for sale on www.blurb.com where her friends and family could purchase a book. But, instead of pocketing the profits, Alex wanted to give the profits away.
She and her mom researched local charities, and when they found SAFE, it was a perfect fit.
“Helping horses makes me happy. I don’t want any horses to be hurt or suffer,” Alex wrote.
Alex initially raised $350 through her book sales and then donated two extra copies for the Heart of the Horse auction at SAFE and raised another $875.
In total, she raised $1,225 for SAFE. Her book is still available on the website, with all profits going to SAFE.
In the meantime, Alex is looking forward to taking the Aspiring Authors class again this spring.
“Writing is very fun for me,” she wrote, adding that her favorite books to read are Judy Moody and Geronimo Stilton books.
She plans to write another book in the class and will ask her mom if she can publish again so she can donate the money to SAFE.
Since 2005, SAFE has been deeply committed to rescuing horses.
Once a horse is rehabilitated and ready for a permanent home, SAFE does extensive background checks and research to make sure each horse goes to a good home.
For more information, visit their website www.safehorses.org