Thursday, May 7, 2015

The Art of Love by Kaila Pettigrove

What difference can art make? For many people art is a luxury, an extra, or even frivolous. What can practical benefit can artistic endeavours exact?

This question was considered and answered in an amazing way by a ten-year-old girl in Auckland. When her school held a mufti day to raise money for cyclone relief in Vanuatu, Harriet put her art skills to good use.

She created and sold mini-stationary sets with intricate detail, gorgeous colours and ingenious accents.

I had an opportunity to talk to Harriet about the experience and this is what she had to say:

Kids Friendly: What inspired you to make your stationary sets?

Harriet: Mrs. F, our science teacher, gave me a bunch of miniature matchboxes. At first, I wasn’t sure what to do with them. It was then that I realised that the mini pencils I had made for my pencil box fit in the matchboxes. Kate (another girl in my class) really liked the idea so I made one for her. Then we heard about the mufti day to raise money for Vanuatu and I started making sets to raise money.

KF: Which item was the most fun to make? (Why?) 
Harriet’s mini-stationary may not replace
 lost items, but her contribution has boosted
the efforts to rebuild after the disaster. 
H: The most fun to make were the pencils because I got to choose all the colours and patterns.

KF: Do you have a favourite item?
H: My favourite item is the rubber.

KF: How long did it take you to fill all your orders?
H: All together it took over nine hours, 45 minutes for each set I made.
KF: Did anything surprise you about the process? (Was it more/less work? Did your friends react like you thought they would?)
H: Yes, it took me longer than I thought it would. My friends reacted exactly as I had imagined. (They were excited and more orders came in when they saw the first set.)

KF: How much did you charge per set and how much money did you raise in the end?
H: I charged $2 per set and managed to raise $32. Altogether for the mufti day (from chores, sponsorship and my pencil sets) I raised $122.

KF: Do you know where the money will go?

H: All the money raised went to Vanuatu.

KF: What do you hope will be done with the money?
H: I hope that the money will be used to help rebuild the houses that were destroyed in the recent cyclone.

KF: The Kids Friendly art and writing competition always carries the theme, "Love Reaches Out." This year, we are focusing on "Love is..." How would you finish the sentence, "Love is…"?
H: In this perspective, Love is being kind through your actions.
“Kind actions do not cost much yet they accomplish much”- Blaise Pascal

KF: Why do you think it's important for people who want to live a Christian life to think about these things?
H: To lead a Christian life is to follow [Jesus’s] example and lead a better life while helping others to do this too.

Harriet’s project is a perfect example of someone using their gifts and talents to reach out to others in love. Harriet spent hours and hours using her skills, brought joy to her classmates, and helped people she didn't even know.

When we recognize our talents as gifts from God and use them as such, it is amazing what we can do.

During our annual “Love Reaches Out” art and writing competition, we challenge children to consider how they might reach out in love to those around them. They express their response through artistic or written means. For more information on entering the “Love Reaches Out” competition, visit our website:

Kaila Pettigrove is a part-time
Kids Friendly Coach in Auckland. 

Her latest creative endeavour
 was teaching her son to snorkel!

No comments:

Post a Comment