Freezing and striking ‘mannequin challenge’ poses are girls dancing and parading around in a “100 dresses” event. They pause to honor St. Christopher’s Children and its founder, Robert Pelletier, at McDonald Elementary School, Georgetown, Monday, Dec. 12. Audiences of a recent New York City stage play, “The Hundred Dresses,” took part in the “100 Dresses Drive,” donating 400 dresses during shows last October. Producer Laura Luc drove from NYC and delivered the dresses to Pawleys Island. Her mother has a home here. School Nurse Susan Carolina took dresses to McDonald Elementary where students wear the colorful items to do fun things like dancing until the music stops, then all freezing and striking ‘mannequin challenge’ poses.
Artist April Bensch has designed a colorful mascot for St. Christophers Children, a Pawleys Island organization for Georgetown County youth with special needs. She says she was smiling the whole time she was creating the mascot, “Saint Chris, the Derby Horse With Braces on Its Teeth.” Her work is a prelude to the release later this year of a new children’s book being written about Saint Chris. She will also provide additional illustrations for the book.
The novel’s author is Thomas Pelletier, who is the son of St. Christophers Children Founder Robert Pelletier. “I love how colorful Mr. Pelletier’s description of his horse character was, and I couldn’t wait to bring it to life,” says Bensch. “I love the beauty in his story—someone who overcomes adversity despite difficult beginnings and is able to shine all the more brightly due to his imperfections,” she says. “I would hope everyone could learn a lesson from this horse; to not give up or make excuses about their capabilities because of their past or current challenges.”
“I enjoy creating work for children, whether it is a mural for a youth’s playroom, or illustrating a children’s book, because children are just like me, ‘childlike.’ They love color, they love nature, they love to find secrets in small details, and they love to laugh. St. Christopher’s mascot is no exception to these concepts.”
“Giving back to youth and community is not just fun or rewarding, it also is essential,” she says. “If we want our world to get better instead of worse. In a culture where the mantra seems to be, ‘So, what can you do for me,’ it is such a blessing to be involved in any event or organization devoted to the opposite.”
This video shows Grand Knight Bill Sturgeon, Precious Blood of Christ Catholic Church Knights of Columbus, Council 11028, Pawleys Island, S.C., presenting a $500 check to Lisa Hinkson, Executive Director, St. Christopher’s Children. The Executive Director says the check for $500 will assist the nonprofit in carrying out its mission in Georgetown County. “It aides youngsters in critical need by purchasing basic clothing for some and by referring others to medical professionals. We also operate St. Christopher’s Resale Store in Pawleys Island, adjacent to the Applewood House of Pancakes.”
St. Christopher’s Children was named one of the top 10 charitable Angels of 2014 by the S.C. Secretary of State. The nonprofit, which provides clothing and other services to the area’s children, was nominated by the public for its work helping kids in need. Read more about the award in the Coastal Observer’s account.