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Kids envision peace on Kind Day [Marin Independent Journal]

by Richard Halstead
Marin Independent Journal
Tues., January 18, 1994

It was anything-can-come-true day for a group of kids from Bayside/Martin Luther King School in Marin City yesterday, and 10-year-old Tatiana Williams knew exactly what she wanted: Peace on earth.

“My friend Qa’id, he got during a festival. He died in the hospital the next day. I was sad. That’s why there needs to be peace,” Williams said.

Qa’id Walker-Teal was the 6-year-old Marin City boy killed by a stray bullet during the Marin City Festival in August 1992. The killing remains unsolved.

Williams was among 15 children who gathered on Martin Luther King Day to participate in an arts program designed to build self-esteem. Other children also sounded a non-violent theme:

• “I’d stop the violence. To get a gun you would have to get a license and be over 21,” said 11-year-old Deshane Johnson.
• “Peace on earth. no guns. No swords or objects. Martin Luther Kind said if you hate someone, you should still love them,” said 10-year-old Charon Morgan-Denny.

The self-esteem program, developed by Hope Katz of San Anselmo, gives kids a chance to work in several art media. In images and words, using paints and donated Polaroid cameras, they get the opportunity to express their wishes.

“I told them, ‘this is your opportunity to change the world,” said Katz, founder of The Writing’s on the Wall, a non-profit educational organization for kids.

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"I get by with a little help from my friends," says Hope, who gives special thanks to:

• MICHAEL GIBBS, website illustration and design: www.michaelgibbs.com
• MAX KUKOY, website development: www.maxwebworks.com
• STEVE BARRETT, portrait of Hope on Bio page: www.stevebarrettphotography.com

Contact HOPE KATZ GIBBS by phone [703-346-6975] or email.

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