The Trouble with the Alphabet

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The ABCs of Raising Money for Third-World Children

Sudan - Caryn West
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New York, NY (CMN) November 23, 2008 -- The Trouble with the Alphabet seeks to raise money for children affected by strife around the world. The Trouble with the Alphabet: Through the Eyes of Innocence is written and illustrated by Caryn West, a commercial artist with a passion for humanitarian initiatives. The book addresses the plight of hundreds of millions of children who suffer under a variety of afflictions - AIDS, poverty, hunger, war, rape, genocide, and child labor to name a few. For each letter of the alphabet, a country and a charitable organization working in that country are featured with full-color art, poetry, and information about the charities that need support.

Since 2003, in the Darfur region of Sudan, over 400,000 people have been killed and over 2 million have been displaced, many of them children. In Oman, the fine for using child labor is only $1,300. It is estimated that approximately one out of every ten children die before they reach age five in Djibouti. In the Second Lebanon War, over 1/3 of the casualties were children. The average murder rate in Jamaica is four murders a day, of which 119 were children in one year. When a region is thrown into chaos, it is always the children who are most vulnerable.

"I tapped into everything within me to execute my vision and in the process discovered not only myself but the world and the under-appreciated concept of activism,"  said Caryn West -Behind the Project

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Proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to the various charities, such as Invisible Children, FACE AIDS, the International Campaign for Tibet, Beyond Borders, Action Against Hunger, and many others. The book will be available for purchase through the featured charities themselves, or online at, where the purchaser may indicate which charity the proceeds will go toward.

Caryn told Cable Muse Network the book was “printed in the US using wind energy, recycled forest managed paper and for every tree used in the manufacturing, two trees are planted in Afghanistan or other war torn countries by Roots of Peace.”

Tibet - Caryn West
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Many celebrity activists are praising The Trouble with the Alphabet. Actress Brooke Shields says, "It is a wonderful way to teach children. I have been reading it to both of my daughters. It is poignant and a sensitive way to teach children about tragedies throughout the world and how we can help. It is a very important book."

Robin Leach of the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous adds his own endorsement: "To use the simplicity of the alphabet to raise awareness of the world's woes is brilliant. To explain in easy terms the compelling images through the eyes of a child is genius. If ever there was a prime example of 'the pen is mightier than the sword' then this is the book. It should be read by everyone--from world leaders to young people learning about the world and all in between!"

Caryn West was asked by the Iowa Council for International Understanding along with the Human Rights Commission and the Des Moines Public Library, to make a presentation on December 10th at a symposium celebrating the 60th anniversary of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

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