Pittsburgh

3,700 Paper Cranes Set for Delivery to Franklin Regional High School on Wednesday, June 4, 2014

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Folding for Good for Franklin Regional*: Keep on going, people care!

photo-8On Wednesday, June 4, 2012, I will present Franklin Regional High School Principal Ronald Suvak and his staff with around 3,700 strung paper cranes in support of the school community which was rocked on April 9 when a sophomore student went on a “stabbing and slashing spree” injuring 20 students and a security guard.

Folding for Good for Franklin Regional is our initiative to join with other paper folders to create 1,000 paper cranes for Franklin Regional. Japanese tradition suggests that the folding of 1,000 origami cranes grants the recipient a wish. Folding for Good for Franklin Regional netted 3,700 origami cranes from folders in Ireland, Germany, and eight of the United States—more than triple what we had hoped for.

On April 11, in launching this initiative, I wrote, “Like other instances of random, senseless violence unleashed on unsuspecting students embarking on an ordinary day in school buildings, I am not at all sure that full explanations or true motives will ever be completely understood. I do know that, in the aftermath, a lot of healing needs to happen. We can help by creating a tangible token of group concern. We are folding origami peace cranes for the Franklin Regional High School Community.”

Thanks to everyone who supported this initiative. Each crane was donated and the folders themselves footed the cost of postage to Pittsburgh. Student organizers put up tables in school cafeterias, libraries, GATE classrooms, and Girl Scout meetings. Other students hosted “fold-ins” at their homes. The Pitt Origami Club folded cranes at their last meeting of Spring term during finals week. photo-9Individuals created original centerpieces and Franklin Regional Panther logo cranes. One complete, matched senbazuru strung with faith, hope and love beads was created by a single person.

Around 2,100 of the cranes came in “loose.” I ironed, fluffed, sorted and strung all; some are grouped into themes of sorts: there’s a “doodle strand,” strands in Franklin Regional school colors, matching pair strands of big and little cranes, the message strand, floral strands, and plenty of colorful rainbow strands. I ordered some custom stickers for the tails of the many completed strands.

Some people wrote wishes on the wings of their cranes. Here are a few sentiments from student folders:

  • Stay Strong;
  • Remember, for every one thing bad, 2 good things will come;
  • Talking with quiet confidence beats screaming with insecurity;
  • Have faith, things will get better;
  • It’s not what we are that makes the world, it’s what we aren’t;
  • The love in the world is always more powerful than the hate;
  • Be the change you want to see in the world; and
  • Keep on going, people care.

I also kept a scrapbook of every note sent in along with a list of everyone who participated for our friends at FR. See, www.facebook.com/notes/origami-salami/folding-for-good-for-franklin-regional/787650054580497

Each faculty member will receive a specially strung crane or crane pair with a note explaining this initiative, and there will be around 22 extras in case those who were injured would like one.

And so will end the eventful school year at Franklin Regional Senior High School.

Thank you all. We have done something good.

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photo-6*Folding for Good for Franklin Regional is coordinated by Calista Frederick-Jaskiewicz, Founder & CEO ofOrigami Salami and Folding for Good, which currently comprises 16 chapters on four continents. Origami Salami is a student movement mobilizing people as advocates for STEAM studies through the fun of origami; Folding for Good is an initiative to engineer creative ways to Do Good with it.

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Folding for Good: Origami Tribute to Sandy Hook

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A Year Later… Wishes Handwritten on Thousands of Cranes… Operation Sandy Hook: Peace to You

On Friday, December 14, 2012, a gunman entered Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut and murdered 20 school children and six teachers and administrators.

We published an invitation to the folders of the world on our Facebook page to join together in folding origami peace cranes. Possibly even 1,000 of them. An Origami Salami Holiday event planned for December 15 in Denver by Seb Tabares became the first public event for “Operation Sandy Hook: Peace to You.” Over the next several months, our origami friends around the world responded with over 10,000 origami cranes and projects incorporating the iconic origami crane.

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Over the year, we have not ceased to think about the happenings of Sandy Hook, and pondered what this meant overall, and to our mission as well. Many of the cranes came from schools where leadership took the opportunity to build whole multi-disciplinary modules around learning how to fold the origami crane, and then do good with it, and also help students and parents overcome fear and anxieties about the daily routine of going to that place that is school.

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People designed original origami models and later published instructions; new origami clubs were begun in at least six schools; people from  Ireland, Germany, Australia, Japan, Hungary, the Philippines, Panama, England, India, Italy, England, Africa and the United States of America participated; many wrote prayers, thoughts, and wishes in their cranes.Families got together and learned the crane too, some folding hundreds. Others were folded by people overcoming their own more personal issues—one in hospital recovering from leukemia treatments, one passing on a family sanbazuru commemorating the passing of an infant family member. It wasn’t an inexpensive undertaking either. Pretty origami papers can cost! Many learners practiced on copy paper until the folding was just right; in fact, one future Origami Salami leader test folded over 100 cranes, but only sent in the best ones. Wordpress 7Mailing was the most expensive item, especially international shipments. Some international participants sent theirs to the United States in the suitcases of travelers; others sent photos and are still figuring how to afford the mail costs. Folders in one country petitioned local government to subsidize mail costs. I rented out a Post Office Box to receive it all. As I realized that my cell phone photos were not reproducible, I needed a photographer to assist with quality archiving too.

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The efforts of the thousands of people who participated made news from Galway, Ireland to Jonesboro, Tennessee. Crane projects figured into our “Liberty Treehouse” segment (an educational program on GBC-TV in the United States—our story is still in edit and queue); on KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh, PA; and at the 2013 Ohio Paper Folders Annual Convention in Columbus.

These treasures became the subject of an October 3-November 7, 2013 exhibit at the world class Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where folks believe in doing good with science too.

The leadership of Origami Salami and Folding for Good nearly doubled. And our able and talented leaders staged group events in their homes, clubs, and communities.

Great contacts have been made with officials in Sandy Hook Elementary. A new school will be constructed—the old one is being razed. Ours is a project of great hope, universal empathy, and solidarity. I think we will wait for that new school to conclude these efforts.

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Links to our photo archives are below, along with a listing of many of the organizations which participated and supported us. The many individuals persons are noted in or Facebook archive.

For more about Folding for Good’s “Operation Sandy Hook: Peace to You,” please visit our Facebook photo album archives:

Thank you to everyone who participated in this initiative, including:

  • About.com/origami by Dana Hinders
  • Albany High School,
  • Baden Academy
  • Beaver County STEM Advocacy Coalition
  • Breanna Kristian Photography and Design
  • Budapest Origami Club
  • Carnegie Science Center, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Centro para el Desarrollo Infantil Jerome Bruner
  • Claregalway Educate Together N.S., Claregalway, Ireland
  • Colorado Association for Gifted and Talented
  • Creek Elementary School, Muskogee, Oklahoma
  • Cub Scout Pack 327, Ridgewood, New York
  • Davidson Institute for Talent Development
  • Debrecen Origami Club
  • EIC-TV Network
  • Fred Miller Photography
  • Girl Scout Troop 4102
  • Girl Scout Cadette Troop 4076
  • Grow a Generation
  • Grupo Origami Niteroi
  • HLN-TV : http://www.hlntv.com/article/2012/12/19/acts-kindness-sandy-hook-shooting
  • Homeschool Math by Hand
  • Japan America Society of Pennsylvania
  • KooDooZ
  • Lamar School Sixth Grade, Jonesborough, Tennessee
  • Magyar Origami Kor—Hungarian Origami Society
  • Math-Explosion, by Nick Johnson
  • Midland Elementary School
  • Ms. Feinberg’s Sixth Grade Class, State College
  • NAGC Britain
  • Neel Elementary School, Midland, PA
  • Ohio Paper Folders
  • Origami Club of Pittsburgh
  • Origami for Africa
  • Origami Italia
  • Origami Panama
  • Origami USA
  • Origami, Krigami Y PaperCraft(HN)
  • PA Cyber Charter School
  • Painting Paradise, Kauai, Hawaii
  • Pine-Richland Patch
  • Pittsburgh Today Live! KDKA-TV, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Right Side of the Curve
  • Scoil Bhride, Shantalla, Galway, Ireland
  • Scoil Chaitriona Senior, Renmore, Galway, Ireland
  • Scoil Chaomain, Inis Oirr, Ireland
  • Scoil Chroi Iosa, Galway, Ireland
  • Seton Hall University, Office of Housing and Residence Life
  • Southampton Intermediate School, Southampton, New York
  • St. Mathias Elementary, Ridgewood, New York
  • Supporting Gifted Learners
  • The Helpful Art Teacher
  • United States-Japan Foundation
  • University of Pittsburgh Origami Club

If I have left any organizations out, please let me know. Individuals are too numerous to list here—but are listed in other archives. Thanks.