draw for paws, the Chappaqua-based organization with a mission to support the welfare and rescue of animals in need, will launch its latest initiative, tales & tails, at this year’s Chappaqua Children’s Book Festival (CCBF) on October 2. Aligned with the spirit of the festival, the goal of tails & tales is to foster and inspire a love of reading and writing through animals.
Chappaqua’s Scarlett Chwatko founded draw for paws at just 8-years-old, a remarkable feat as she was battling brain cancer at the time. Combining her love for art and animals, the idea was simple: for every $20 donated to an animal rescue, Scarlett would draw a pet portrait. When Scarlet lost her cancer battle in 2019 her friends were determined to see her dream become a reality and took over her mission. Now the organization boasts over 200 kid (and adult!) artists worldwide, has partnered with shelters and rescues all over the nation, and raised over $75,000.
Scarlett’s love of art was rivaled by her love of reading–and the CCBF was one of her most cherished days, starting as a volunteer at just 3 years old! She could often be found reading to her own pets–and always had a book with her–which is why it is so fitting to launch the new initiative at the festival.
draw for paws will collaborate with librarians, educators and authors to create a program including leveled books, writing prompts to encourage storytelling, and book bundles, featuring CCBF authors, that can be bought to read at home to pets or donated to shelters.
As a festival sponsor, the draw for paws booth will feature a reading space where attendees can read to (and adopt!) shelter dogs. For more info, please visit drawforpaws.org