Bellen Woodard is a very special person, the type of person who realized that she had the power to affect real change ever since she was young.
While there are many who believe that there is little that they can do to change things, Woodard is not that sort of person. Her voice is a very powerful tool and she has been making very good use of it.
Social injustices will not change if we all sit silently and this is a lesson that she has internalized since she was very young.
According to Denver 7, when Woodard was in third grade, she asked one of her classmates for a skin color crayon. They probably did not think anything of it when they handed her the peach crayon. Woodard never forgot this moment, though.
The other child’s actions were innocent enough but that did not stop her from thinking about this for a very long time. Surely, there had to be other children who were going through the same range of emotions as her. “I was feeling a bit confused,” Bellen shared with the outlet. “I knew there was more than one skin color. I knew if I didn’t like being handed the peach crayon, they wouldn’t like being the brown crayon if that wasn’t what they wanted.”
From there, her quest began. In 2020, her family helped her with the rollout of her own crayon set, entitled “More Than Peach.” The set of crayons provides children of all skin tones the chance to enjoy more accurate coloring. “I hope it inspires kids to have conversations about making sure everyone feels welcome and safe in their classrooms,” Bellen said, according to Denver 7.
She was not done there, either. Bellen is now also a published author! She wrote a book that is called “More Than Peach” as well and this is where she tells the story of how she created these crayons. To add to the excitement, the Scripps Howard Fund’s “If You Give a Child a Book…” initiative has chosen her book as their official read aloud story this year.
The campaign works tirelessly to get books into the hands of needy children who are unable to afford them otherwise. Bellen is not about to stop there. She plans on writing another book and continuing to inspire a wide range of young people. “I’m doing something to help change the world,” she says and we could not agree more.SKM: below-content placeholder