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Just Buffalo Literary Center Working to Raise $5,000 by Aug. 31st to Publish "Wordplay" | Arts & Culture

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Just Buffalo Literary Center Working to Raise $5,000 by Aug. 31st to Publish "Wordplay"
Just Buffalo Literary Center Working to Raise $5,000 by Aug. 31st to Publish "Wordplay"

Buffalo, NY—Just Buffalo Literary Center can hear the clock ticking. By 5 PM on August 31st, they need to raise $5,000 to help students in Western New York see themselves in print. Just Buffalo is partnering with Kickstarter -- the internet pledging website for creative projects -- to support the publication of Wordplay, the annual anthology of student writing which highlights the most powerful work from the organization's K-12 writers-in-education program. Wordplay's 5,000-copy print run is distributed to all participating schools, teachers, and families as well as accessible community locations such as public libraries, bookstores, and coffee shops, free of charge. Wordplay gives 100 or more students the experience and validation of seeing their work in print, and demonstrates extraordinary creativity and talent of local youth. "Our philosophy is simple: we give students a blank page and they give us their wishes & fears, hopes & dreams," explains Barbara Cole, Just Buffalo's Education Director. "Wordplay brings these voices together."

In order to make the 2011-2012 edition of Wordplay what Cole describes as "the biggest and most representative" for young people involved in the program yet, Just Buffalo is seeking $5,000 in pledges from the community through the involvement of Kickstarter, an online pledge site for funding creative projects. One important fact about Kickstarter is, if the chosen target is not gathered by the deadline, no funds are collected.

Another is Kickstarter's proven success. Through the use of what they call "crowdfunding," a way to support creative projects by many different sources via their internet pledging platform, Kickstarter has helped raise over $40 million to date! Just Buffalo needs the help of Western New Yorkers to ensure it meets its goal on time. Wordplay is an essential part of Just Buffalo’s Writers in Education program—a unique partnership of professional writers and classroom teachers. More than 2,000 young people from over 20 schools participate each year. Emphasis is placed on serving high-need schools in the City of Buffalo where over 70% of students are living at or below poverty. If you are interested in making a donation, look for Wordplay: celebrating Buffalo's youngest writers at Kickstarter.com. Just Buffalo is a registered 501-c-3 non-profit organization. Your donation is tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. This project will only be funded if at least $5,000 is pledged by Wednesday Aug 31, 5:00pm EDT through the  Kickstarter URL:  http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1414937266/wordplay-celebrating-buffalos-youngest-writers.

Wordplay is a vital and awe-inspiring publication. It testifies to what arts-in-education programs like Just Buffalo's do best--ignite the imagination of young artists. Barbara Cole understands what is at stake for today's students when she states, "We know that writing is not just about getting the right answer on the test. Writing unlocks the imagination. It gives students a chance to open their hearts. It gives us a window into their bright minds, to learn what young people are thinking. At Just Buffalo, we believe that every child has a voice. And, we are here to listen. Please support Wordplay and show the world that you are listening, too." Don't wait. Go online and make a pledge today--give as little as $1.00, or receive a special thank-you from Just Buffalo for donations in the $20 and up. A complete list of rewards for support is available online, and remember, any donation amount is tax-deductible. Give soon, and give generously--the children of Western New York deserve an outlet for their artistic expression, and Wordplay does it perfectly. Donors from across the country, in San Francisco, Philadelphia, Boston, Chicago, are becoming part of Just Buffalo's "crowdfunding" effort, bringing national attention to a very worthy cause. To become involved, or  for more information, visit justbuffalo.org.

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