My name is Sonja O’Brien, originally from Holland I have been living in the west of Ireland for 27 years and running the Boghill Centre for the last 20 years. Although we have always been eco conscious in the business it was only after being involved in the Burren Eco tourism Network, a network of businesses all working towards promoting sustainable tourism in the area that we really stepped up in our efforts to be more eco friendly.
I got the idea for the book after driving back from one of these meetings, but it wasn’t to happen for another three years. In that time I went to college for a part time art degree.
It was only last year when I just made a go for it and started with the first paintings for the book.
“What to do when you visit the Burren, the world and at home” is a children’s picture book consisting of 36 oil paintings with a small picture book inside it -made by the animals of the Burren, with an environmental message about how to preserve the Burren and other fragile natural places from damage done by tourism and pollution through littering etc. The big book tells the story of the animals and how they came to do something about the pollution they saw in their home. The little book inside it gives hints and tips and facts about recycling etc.
I didn’t really have any particularly age in mind when I started it but I think it will appeal to small children being read to and children who can read it for themselves and even adults will find something in it that they can like. I do believe it is important to teach children from a young age to care about the environment and appreciate the beauty of the world we live in and if this book can help towards that in a tiny little way I am happy.
The funding will go towards half of the printing costs and a professional graphic designer to do the lettering and the layout of the first and the last pages of the big book and the design of the little book. The other half is sponsored by The Cliffs of Moher and Burren Geo Park, for which I am eternally grateful.
I do hope you will trust me and help me realise my goal. Thanks so much!!