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Dear Friends of A Living Library & Life Frames, Inc.,

It is always a great pleasure to send greetings and updates to you in this Holiday Season of Sharing & Giving.  We sincerely hope that you will consider supporting Life Frames, Inc. in your year-end donations for our work developing, place-based, Branch Living Library & Think Parks in multiple schools and communities with integrated hands-on learning programs.  A Living Library, or A.L.L., creates content-rich, ecological environments with integrated, multidisciplinary, standards-based curricula for all ages.  Your generous donations – large or small - will help us continue, and also expand our services by developing new Branch Living Library sites in communities – locally and globally.

As the Superintendent of Schools in San Francisco, Richard Carrenza, recently wrote: "For over sixteen years, Life Frames has dedicated thousands of hours and worked with many more thousands of our students and school communities. These collaborations have helped transform their schools’ campuses and neighborhoods into unique, place-based, ecological learning landscapes, each called A Living Library & Think Park.  Through exemplary hands-on, interdisciplinary, standards-based training, the students learn a diverse range of content, including math, science, history, language arts, multi-arts, and technology. Students also become well-versed in issues of climate change, conservation, water and watersheds, green infrastructure and energy, recycling, rainwater harvesting, green jobs, environmental justice, and other ecological practices."

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Life Frames has had an especially busy, productive, auspicious year of growth and accomplishments at our existing Branch Living Library & Think Park sites in San Francisco and New York City,  working with over 2500 children and youth each month, year-round, in hands-on learning and greening of their school’s campus and neighborhood.  Additionally, we are developing the Bernal Heights Living Library Nature Walk  linking several schools, parks, public housing, streets, and other open spaces leading to the currently hidden Islais Creek, where, we have planted over 1000 California native trees and hundreds of native understory plants with hundreds of volunteer youth and adults.  This Nature Walk is a prototype for what can be developed throughout the Islais Creek Watershed, the largest in San Francisco, that interconnects eleven communities.

We are also in discussion with other communities interested in developing their unique, Branch Living Library & Think Park -  from McMinnville, Oregon, to San Antonio, Texas,  to Bronx, New York, to Mexico City, Mexico, and Eindhoven, The Netherlands.  One of Life Frame’s Goals is to interlink A.L.L. Branches through green-powered technologies, so we can learn about similarities and diversities of cultures and ecologies – near and far – and share experience.

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A few of A.L.L.'s Auspicious Achievements include:
•       Working with over 1500, PreK-12 students monthly, year-round, at seven SF public schools (PreK-12), during the school day, after school, and summers in three, low-income neighborhoods in hands-on greening, science, math, literacy, and other subjects
•       Working with hundreds of students and community year-round on Roosevelt Island, NYC from PS/IS 217, The Child School, 217 Beacon in hands-on greening, science, math, literacy, and other subjects
•       Establishing year-round, after school, summer, Paid Green Internships for Middle and High School Students at A.L.L. Branch sites: A.L.L. ECO-ART Summer Internship at OMI/Excelsior; A.L.L. Student Stewards at St. Mary's Recreation Center & Park; A.L.L. Green Futures Student Stewards After-School Internship at OMI/Excelsior
•       Life Frames signed 3 year contract with State of California's Strategic Growth Council for further development of Bernal Heights Living Library & Think Park Nature Walk 

•       Creating, with hundreds of volunteers in Living Library Nature Walk:
        -Riparian Zone
        -Student-led Organic Vegetable, Flower Garden
        -Diverse California Native Drought Tolerant Zones
•       Students created A Living Library Farmer's Market Stand to share the abundance of their produce with their peers, parents, and other adults in OMI/Excelsior

•       About a dozen OMI/Excelsior Student Stewards testified on a Saturday morning in May, to the Mayor, SF Supervisors, other city officials, and hundreds in the audience at the Mayor's Budget Town Meeting, asking for funding for A Living Library, and then delivered to them, bouquets of vegetables and flowers they had grown, in addition to packages of thousands of letters of support for A.L.L.
•       Students mixed their own paint made from Elderberry Flowers that they grew, and created beautiful artworks in our Chinatown Branch Living Library
•       Students rebuilt Greenhouses at OMI/Excelsior Branch and Bernal Heights Branches
•       Life Frames began working with classes from Leadership High School during school day and after school at OMI/Excelsior Branch Living Library
•       Hundreds of community members worked with Life Frames to create new RI Living Library Gardens on Roosevelt Island in NYC on Roosevelt Island Day, June, 2013, as we have each year since 2002, and hundreds of youth maintained them during the school year and summer 
•       Life Frames & SF Recreation & Park Department (RPD) jointly hosted multiple Volunteer Events with One Brick, City College Honor Society, Odyssey Middle School, A.L.L. Student Stewards, and other groups, to continue planting of Bernal Heights Living Library Nature Walk

•       Founder & Director of Life Frames was appointed by RPD Commission to serve on Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) for Alemany Farm and also Citizens Recreation Council (CRC) for St. Mary's Recreation Center
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More Accomplishments !

In addition to the Branch Living Library Programs in schools and communities, A Living Library, and early work leading to its development, were featured in many articles, books, exhibition catalogs, and interviews with the Founder & Director, Bonnie Ora Sherk - both in print and online.  Additionally, many Art Museum Exhibitions, showcasing early art leading to A Living Library, plus an installation of A Living Library at the Van Abbemuseum in The Netherlands, were exhibited A few of the publications and exhibitions are listed below and seen online here.

•       ecoartspace Video Archives Interview with Bonnie Ora Sherk
•       Life Frames, Inc. & A Living Library Projects Overview published 
•       SFAQ International Arts & Culture Journal Interview
•       Project Room, Dinter Fine Art, NYC Online Gallery
•       To Life! Eco Art In Pursuit Of A Sustainable Planet  features Bonnie Ora Sherkby Linda Weintraub, UC Press
•       Centerpoint Now Journal  by WCPUN working in affilliation with the United Nations & UN Department of Public Information features A Living Library
•       Feast: Radical Hospitality in Contemporary Art Exhibition at Smart Art Museum, Chicago; Blaffer Art Museum, Houston, Texas; Site Santa Fe, New Mexico; Gund Gallery at Kenyon College, Ohio with published book: Univ. Chicago
•       Independent Curators International Interview with Bonnie Ora Sherk to be published December, 2013
•       Video of Early Life Frame Leading to A Living Library: Crossroads Community (the farm)
•       Arte Util Exhibition, Van Abbe Museum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
State of Mind Exhibition at Bronx Museum of the Arts; Site Santa Fe, New Mexico; Belkin Art Gallery, Vancouver, Canada; Smart Art Museum, Chicago with published book; UC Press
Green Acres Exhibition at Cincinnati Center of Contemporary Arts, Ohio; American University Museum, Washington, D.C. with catalog; CAC
With gratitude for your past generosity, we ask you once again to donate online here or by check payable to:
Life Frames, Inc.
93 Mirabel
San Francisco, California  94110 
All Donations are tax-deductible - THANK YOU !
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