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Children of Appalachia share stories in new book

Nelsonville, Ohio – A new children’s book written by and for elementary students from Appalachian Ohio and West Virginia shares personal stories while supporting the young authors’ futures.

“Teddy Bear Helps on the Farm,” published by Headline Books and E.G. Bear Company in Parkersburg, W. Va., is a unique collection of short stories and activities written by the children of Appalachia to inspire others. Under the direction of children’s book authors, Martin & Delia Wach and Jason Lynch of E. G. Bear Co., children from Appalachian Ohio and West Virginia schools and workshop attendees at the Mountain State Art & Craft Fair in Ripley, W. Va., provided stories and drawings for this engaging new book. The book will be released at the Bob Evans Farm Festival, Saturday, October 13, at the original Bob Evans Farm in Rio Grande, Ohio.

The project symbolizes the power of children to impact their community and inspire others to lead successful and generous lives. This book stresses the idea that everyone has potential – no matter their abilities or where they are from, said Jason Lynch, co-founder of E.G. Bear Company. Children and their families can explore and engage in activities together, such as coloring and reading. There’s also space for young readers to create their own stories and drawings.

“The process of watching the children of Appalachia reflect upon what it means to help others was amazing,” Lynch said. “We hope readers are inspired to help others in their greater community through this book.”

The book is dedicated to Bob Evans, founder of Bob Evans Restaurants and a native of Gallipolis, Ohio. The publishers chose Evans because they believe he embodies the success anyone can achieve with the right support from their rural roots in Appalachia, Lynch said. A portion of the book’s sales will be donated to the Foundation for Appalachian Ohio (FAO) in honor of Mr. Evans to continue the organization’s support of access to greater educational opportunities for Appalachian Ohio students.

E.G. Bear Company creates a variety of products, including teddy bears, dolls and educational materials, reflecting friendship, faith and love. Each homespun creation is made in the USA by people from West Virginia since the company’s founding in 1995 by a group of friends in the Parkersburg area.