Inspired by a Book, Bakersfield Girl Helps Children in Need
Books open up whole new worlds for children by introducing them to new people, new adventures and new cultures. Sometimes the knowledge gained creates a lasting impression. For 9-year-old Eden Coughran, her reading adventure would change not only her life but also the lives of so many others.
When Eden read “Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes” by Eleanor Coerr, she was so moved by the story, she was inspired to spring into action. The story is set in post-war Japan after the nuclear bomb had been dropped on Hiroshima. The main character, Sadako Sasaki, is only 2 years old at the time and is exposed to radiation. She develops leukemia as a result and ultimately dies. Japanese mythology holds that if 1,000 origami paper cranes are folded, a wish will be granted. Sadako folds as many cranes as she can before she dies but fails to make 1,000.
Though Eden was saddened by the story, a seed of an idea had taken root. What if she could fold 1,000 origami paper cranes, sell them and donate the money to grant the wish of some other child? Eden, aided by her mother, Teresa, started folding. And folding and folding.
She decided to adopt a wish through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Eden chose to grant the wish of a 4-year-old boy named Ricky, who is suffering from a type of cancer that affects the eyes. His wish was to go to Disneyland. Eden began selling her paper cranes around the neighborhood, at school and wherever she could. She has created two sizes: a large one for $5 and smaller ones that she has fashioned into earrings for $10. She has sold more than $2,000 worth so far. Her goal is to collect $3,000, the cost of Ricky’s wish.
Eden’s efforts have been recognized by other media outlets, as well as by Beautiful Bakersfield. Eden won an award from the group for her contributions. Her loving and generous heart inspires everyone who meets her.
To help Eden meet her goal, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or find her on Facebook at Facebook.com/Cranes4ACause.