The cover of April Churchill’s new book, The Atlantic Right Whale.
-by Rankin MacDonald
A young woman with roots that overlook the Gulf of St. Lawrence has written a book about the endangered North Atlantic right whale.
April Churchill has written a children’s book about the whale that now swims the waters below Broad Cove, the home of her late grandmother, Mary Beaton.
Lots of family still live in Broad Cove and every summer they come home and her daughter and nieces sold painted rocks at Inverness and Mabou markets to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis, a disease that took her sister from her.
I was inspired to write the children’s book about the North Atlantic right whales after seeing their arrival in Cape Cod this summer. The endurance of these magnificent animals amazes me. These critically endangered animals, who were hunted almost until extinction, now face ocean and sound pollution yet they persist. Through all of this, these animals continue to be curious and kind to their fellow creatures, including humans. The mission of our books is to instill in children the importance of caring for our beautiful Earth and all it’s creations. We aim to cultivate kindness to one another, to self, the environment, and all living creatures. I have been coming home to Cape Breton Island every summer since I was born and I feel this place was where my love and respect for nature and people began. I was fortunate enough to visit the farm where my grandmother grew up (which is now the buffalo farm) and my cousins showed me how to feed baby animals, milk cows, play in the barn, pick rhubarb and blueberries to make pies, and my great uncle let us join in the haymaking. We were always shown kindness and love from our family in Cape Breton and they always made us feel like we were home. As a teenager, I was able to ride on a fishing boat to Margaree Island and see the pilot whales and seals. As an adult, with my own children, I bring them to the beach, hike, swim in waterfalls while teaching them the importance of caring for the environment and community. I also try to show them the importance of being involved in community and giving back. My mom is active in the art centre every summer. She is a creator in all she does whether it’s painting, gardening, knitting, or writing. I thank her for showing me and my children the importance of nature and art and fostering a love and appreciation for our roots in Cape Breton, a place she feels most at home,” April wrote.
Their website is www.gogreengivebackbooks.com.
Take the journey written by April and illustrated by her mother Donna Lucas and give the children a love of the beautiful creatures we share the planet.
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