Aussie kids ‘penpals’ with Fote Village (Article from

On December 2, 2008 by admin

a drawing from a clare student to fote

a drawing from a clare student to fote

THEY are separated by thousands of kilometres, from the sunburnt drought of the outback to the tropical jungles of the South Pacific.

But the children from Clare Public School in rural Australia and Fote Village in the Solomon Islands know exactly what it is like to live in a remote community.

This Christmas – through the work of an Australian startup charity and – they are sharing their experiences with each other in a unique penpal scheme.

Fote is the village readers have so far raised almost $8000 for so that the Little and LOUD charity can give them the sort of gifts and facilities most of us take for granted.

Clare Primary School in rural New South Wales may not be in the jungle but it is just as remote, attended by just seven youngsters drawn from the farms in the area.

When Little and LOUD programme director Rhoda Lazo visited Clare last month she brought along photos and drawings done by the Solomons kids and it turned out both groups knew a thing or two about the land.

Gallery: See outback kids and their pictures
Pictures: What the kids in Fote Village drew for us

“What struck me about the drawings the kids did in Fote was just how much nature and animals played into their daily lives,” Ms Lazo, 33, said.

“When we asked them to draw their best friend one of the children drew a pig.”

Ms Lazo said in Clare the children were so impressed by the pictures from faraway Fote they grabbed crayons to draw pictures of windmills, farmland and anatomically-correct merino rams to share the stories of their daily lives.

“They talked about farming and sheep in quite intricate detail,” she said.

Little and LOUD plan to return to Fote with the Aussie kids’ drawings and gifts from the Adopt a Village crowdfunding project.

On the back of one of the windmill pictures from Clare was a simple message of connection: “I hope you have a merry Christmas. Greetings from Clare School, Australia. From Fred.”

This week the Adopt a Village crowdfunding total stands at $7642 – leaving $2358 to reach our target of $10,000.

Donations can be made through Little and LOUD’s secure PayPal account using the button on’s Adopt a Village interactive above or through our special section here.

You can also transfer money to their Westpac account in the name “Little and Loud International Incorporation”, account number 202754 and BSB: 032-040.

By Staff Writers


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