Please scroll down and read positive feedback and see feedback videos from; Organizations, Parents, Phycologist/Social Workers, and Team Leaders/Consultants.
World Vision USA & Zambia
Rahsaan Graham, Former Senior Director for Child Protection and Education with World Vision USA
“This was the first time World Vision has partnered with another organization like Kids Share Workshops in our education and development work. It was a great opportunity and we wanted to look at Kids Share’s programming to make sure it was technically sound. I partnered with colleagues in World Vision from our Child Protection Sector, Education Sector, our Psycho-Social Sector, Psycho-Emotional Development Sectors, and Youth Workforce Development. And they all looked at the Kids Share curriculum and we decided this was a great opportunity for us to really focus and work with them.
We looked closely at their social and emotional aspects of learning, the self-awareness that children have, to manage their feelings, motivation, empathy and even their social skills, and we saw that Kids Share’s curriculum fit right in the middle of the work that we were doing. We have built it into our first module in our Youth Ready work, Module One, Who am I? And who are we?
So, in our partnering with the two Zambian communities at the Bimbe Primary School and the Home of Hope, the Kids Share work has been a tremendous fit.”
International Team Leaders/Directors/Consultants
“Creative. Charismatic. Caring. Calm under pressure. That’s Kristina in a nutshell. I recently worked as part of the Kids Share Workshop Zambia team, on Kristina’s collaboration with World Vision. Kristina worked diligently to find World Vision USA as a partner to provide resources and a new location for Kids Share’s book-building workshop- with school children in Zambia. Kristina put together a creative, hard-working and dedicated team, that under her leadership, presented a workshop that enriched the lives of children who had never experienced a workshop like this, much less had art supplies at their disposal and a book to call their own. The book, which the students wrote and illustrated, tells their story – empowering them by giving them a creative outlet and a voice to share with others.
Kristina wrote the curriculum for the workshop, worked graciously and professionally with World Vision to include them in her process and progress, and traveled with her team to Zambia to lead the program, and again to bring the students their published books and celebrate their achievements. I was fortunate to serve as an art director and book designer for Kids Share Zambia, and Kristina was a dream to work with – inspiring, punctual, accessible and helpful while giving me creative freedom to do my part in the project. Her personal artwork (Kristina is also a talented professional fine artist) which she created collaboratively through a storytelling brainstorming and art directing session with the students, added a beautiful touch to the book and offered yet another creative teaching moment to the students. I very much enjoyed and was honored to be a part of this feel-good, empowering workshop for Kids Share Zambia.
I hope to be able to work with Kristina again on her future projects. She is both a leader and an excellent team player, and I know she will be successful and will continue to touch others with her passion and vision.”
“Kristina conducts herself personally and professionally with utmost integrity and compassion. She excels in public relations, rooted in her deep commitment to her vision. She attracts and retains volunteers, motivated by her limitless energy and empowering, respectful leadership. If you are looking to partner with a talented artist and highly effective businesswoman, I recommend Kristina Applegate with great confidence.”
Lorena Frias, Former Partners of the Americas-Costa Rica
“I appreciate immensely the wonderful opportunity I was given through Kristina and Kids Share Workshops to participate in the GMCR Kids Share workshops, representing Sister Schools. I was impressed by GMCR’s staff, their warmth and inspiration, CRN schools, staff and students, their discipline, dedication, and joy, as well as Kristina’s expertise and gift for bringing all of us together. Keep up the good work!”
Phycologist & Social Workers
Keith Storace, Psychologist in Melbourne Australia
“Kids Share Workshops’ mission to inspire self-expression in children echoes my personal and professional commitment to encourage a child’s healthy sense of self in the context of connecting with the community. My interest in contributing to Kids Share Workshops stems from my chosen area of work that emphasizes the importance and impact of the child’s interpretation and belief about their environment and that art can be a welcomed catalyst for change within that environment.”
Kristina had more energy than the 30+ Newtown children in the room. It was a fun experience, artistic, creative, sensitive, multimedia and best of all curative for all involved. I would recommend Kristina for artwork with children, especially since this form of expression has been diminished over the years in the standard academic system.
Mary Pellicci Hamilton, Harvard Global Mental Health: Trauma and Recovery Certificate Program
“Kristina brought not only her skillful artistic expertise to a grieving community, but she also provided incredible compassion and grounding to the participants and their families. The children’s expressive smiles and excitement can be seen captured through the amazing photography by Keane Photography. The paper-art making process was healing on multiple levels and allowed the children to recreate order from chaos. The written story narration empowered the children with themes of superhero abilities and majestic power and control. KSW was embraced by the families and Newtown community. A win-win for all!”
Juan Miguel Rizo, Former Community Outreach Leader in San Ramon, Nicaragua
“Kristina was enthusiastic to bring Kids Share Workshops into our rural El Roblar, San Ramon, Nicaragua community in order to bring a writing and art therapy workshop to the children. The children of this community have little access to the arts and few own their own books. At the time Kristina did not know any Spanish but was able to work well despite this handicap. As her part-time interpreter, I placed Kristina with a coffee farming family where she lived for several weeks while teaching. I would recommend Kristina to work with rural families in Latin America because she is passionate about creating a better future for our children and values cross-cultural connections between countries.”
“Kristina is not only a talented artist but a true leader with a unique vision for bringing about positive change and healing through the creative arts. She is able to inspire others and lead in such a way as to bring out the natural talents unique to each person she reaches, whether it be a coworker, volunteer or workshop participant. Kristina has a natural, gifted way of dealing with children, which makes the workshops she leads a comfortable environment for children to share, grow, and gain confidence in their strengths. In this same way, she empowers parents, volunteers, and her co-directors to embrace their strengths and build on them.”
“Kristina is an immensely talented artist and a tireless visionary who continually inspires those around her. Her energy and enthusiasm are irrepressible and infectious, her warmth genuine, and her ideas original. In addition to her outstanding work as an illustrator and portrait artist, Kristina founded a nonprofit, cross-cultural arts program that helps children express themselves through stories and illustrations, which are ultimately published in book form. Thanks to her leadership, Kids Share Workshops has grown from one woman’s dream into a strong team effort that continues to expand its reach worldwide. To know Kristina is to know that nothing can stop her from pursuing her passions. She is a remarkable person who makes good things happen. I am proud to call her my friend and colleague.”
Kris Shonk Pfeifer, Graphic Designer
“I had the pleasure of working with Kristina as a volunteer for the Newtown Kids Share Workshop. Kristina brings enthusiasm, compassion, and creative talent to all that she does. She was able to manage and direct a large group of volunteers effectively, maintain a fun, positive, stimulating atmosphere for both students and volunteers, and provide an enriching educational experience through the well-planned curriculum. She is a strong leader and manager who is always willing to listen and problem solve, and works well in a team. Kristina is a highly skilled illustrator who amazes and delights with her work! I am confident she can be a success with what she puts her mind to next!”
Patty Short, Grant Writer/Non-profit Expertise
“Kristina is a true visionary. Through her leadership, creative inspiration and determination, she founded Kids Share Workshops and Publishing, a non-profit that inspires children to share their lives through art and writing. Kristina touches the lives of all she meets with her inspired creativity, focus, quick wit, kindness, and compassion.”
Quotes from Sandy Hook/Newtown, Connecticut Parents
(Two Year Workshops)
“My little man is super-duper excited about doing Kids Share Workshop for the second time. He loved, loved it the first time 2 years ago. So, the second time around would be even better. What a great way to express creativity through art. This Kids Share Workshop starting end of this March is going to be awesome and a great way to Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and make it NEW!!!!”-Mai Tran
“The girls and I are so excited to be a part of yet another amazing Kids Share Workshop next week!!!”-Beth Gallagher Hegarty
“Super Excited to be working with these amazing Ladies Next week! Thank you, Kristina Applegate,!”-Kathy Gramolini, 3rd Grade Teacher
“What a great bunch of kids, volunteers, teachers, mothers…I was only there one day but WOW what an experience. You go, girls…changing the world!” –Brenda Berda
“WOW!!!! Omg, the stories were amazing!!!! What an awesome job on the art and stories the kiddos did. Love, love it!!!!” –Mai Tran
“Amazing experience for all!!! Keep up the good work Kristina!”-Beth Gallagher Hegarty
April 21, 2013, “Kids Share Workshop is awesome and brings out the creativity of the mind, the kids love loved it!”-Newtown Parent
[It was] an opportunity for my son to express himself and [to] heal.”-Sandy Hook Parent
“After the events that occurred here, I thought it would be wonderful for my child to write and put her thoughts elsewhere.”-Sandy Hook Parent
“[It offered] an excellent creative outlet.”-Sandy Hook Parent
“Team building!”-Newtown Parent
“My child had so much fun. She was excited every day to go!”
“It was an amazing opportunity to expand your imagination and creativity.” ~Participant
“Loved, loved, loved them [the activities]. Loved the imaginative stories and activities that corresponded with them!”
“The Kids Share team are superheroes!”
“Word cannot express the Kids Share leaders. They became our family.”
“[They were] compassionate, sensitive, and understanding.”
“The friendships we still have after the workshop!”
“Getting [the opportunity] to work together was very healing.”
Please read about us in The Newtown Bee!