Africrans By Amerikids recycled crayon bars are not only a fun novelty product, but a community involvement project shedding light and raising money for global needs as related to children.
Africrans are produced by Heidi Ziebarth (12), family and friends. Old crayons are collected from schools and restaurants. With community help, crayons are sorted, peeled, and melted into new novelty crayon bars. Africrans are produced and packaged with recycled and repurposed materials. 50% profits help provide safety, education, and art supplies for orphans and human trafficking rescue operations around the world.
UPDATE: see www.abolitionart.com.
XAlso see “Christi’s Blog” at the right side category
Xmenu to read reflective thoughts on the
XAfricrans Journey by web author,
XChristi Ziebarth (the “Mom”).
Pictured above: What do you do with 800 lbs. of crayons? This year, before starting the task of sorting and peeling local school donations, Heidi and Morgan invited some friends over and had a Crayon Beach Party. They took turns burying each other in crayons and laughing hysterically.
XThe majority of our Xdonations are col-
Xlected from regional Xelementary schools
XRecycling helps to
Xsave our planet.
Crayon products are rendered from 2 ingredients: paraffin and pigmnent. Crayon paraffin is a petroleum-based product and non-biodegradable. Petroleum is a nonrenewable resource. Crayons sit in landfills for 1,000′s of years. Recycling crayons is an excellent way to help children develop a habit of recycling. Old crayons are something most every child has and can contribute. Help us preserve our natural resources and keep our planet clean.
“It only takes one person to make a great idea. Recycling makes a difference…what a great way to reuse crayons.”
—Shelly Heckert, Kosciusko County Recycling Depot
The mission of Africrans by Amerikids is to empower environmental responsibility, educate a transformative view of global needs initiatives, and provide participation and philanthropic opportunities for individuals of all ages.
How Africrans began: Africrans by Amerikids began in the spring of 2010 as a recycling and philanthropic initiative by Heidi Ziebarth (age 11) and “Mom,” as manager and creative engineer.
XAfter being named
Xthe “Best of Show”
Xwinner for the 2011
XREMC Electric Student
XArt Calendar Contest,
XHeidi chose to invest
Xa portion of her prize
X$ to start a hands-on Xrecycling initiative
Xaimed to raise $ for
Xchildren in Africa.
Pictured above: Heidi’s winning mosaic artwork featured at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. The awards hosted by The Hoosier Salon, Fall, 2010. (Heidi won for her 6th grade division the following year. Sister, Morgan’s artwork will be featured as 4th grade winner in REMC’s 2013 calendar.) See the REMC Electric Consumer Magazine article “Making Their Mark” at:
“The first thing Heidi said after she learned of her award was that she wanted to use her prize money to help children in Africa. Our parenting philosophy involves creativity and life-long learning. Instead of sending a check away as a one-time gift, a small business seemed a good way to involve community and provide a sustainable avenue of giving. So, we prayed for an idea.” — Christi Ziebarth, “Mom”
When it comes to recycling, responsibility happens one box, one bag, one can, or one crayon at a time. When it comes to caring for global needs, change is empowered one life at a time. Each crayon matters. Each life counts.
Our passion involves a winning combination of educating, recycling, and bringing communities together to help global needs as related to children.
See Heidi’s original blogsite at
Heidi took her passion to technology and developed the above site in her Tech Club at Harrison Elementary with her teacher, Mr. Glass. It was through the development process of this site that it became clear there was much potential for a significant educational componenent. The more Heidi researched and shared her discoveries, the more we heard the phrase, “We never knew.” Heidi researched the chocolate, clothing, and coffee industries as leading topics in the fight against slave labor.
Heidi took this information into her school earlier this fall as a Powerpoint research project. Heidi learned that abolition, care, and philanthropy begins where you are. Communicate to whom you know in your own sphere of influence. Reach outwards from there and aim for a ripple effect.
A component of the Africrans educational goals involves communicating and preventing an often overlooked by-product of global poverty: slavery and human trafficking. By helping with or purchasing our product, you are contributing not only to orphan care, but to proactive abolition and rescue efforts. Every child deserves love, safety, freedom, and outlets for creativity.
XAfricrans packages are sold in Michiana retail
Xlocations with 50% proceeds helping provide
Xsafety, education, and art supplies for orphans
Xand human-trafficking rescue operations.
X“I want to help orphaned children in Africa have
Xwhat they don’t have so they can enjoy life and Xcreativity, too.” —Heidi
June 2012 NEWS UPDATE!
This past spring, we received exciting news that Morgan (Heidi’s sister) who is now 10 years old won the REMC Electric Cooperatives Student Calendar Art Contest among all 4th-graders across Indiana (a K-12 contest). This is the same contest through which Heidi received and invested her prize money to begin the Africrans project two years ago. Morgan decided to use a portion of her contest prize money to make a difference in the world, too.
XAs an extension of the Africrans
Xproject, Morgan and Mom
Xdeveloped simplecrayon loop
Xnecklaces and bracelets using
Xrubber tire lacing (to continue
Xthe recycling concept).
XMorgan rallied friends at recess
Xand after school to help.
During the last week of school, these were sold as a special promotion to help raise money for her teacher, Mr. Glass.
Through the Africrans project we spread the message that it is important to grow compassion for needs around the world. Morgan’s new project helped us all remember to balance our compassions by keeping an eye out for needs that are “close to home”. Mr. Glass’s family was in need. His wife underwent three intensive brain surgeries for epilepsy earlier in 2012. The family is left with gigantic medical bills…AND thankfulness to God for signs of healing and improvement.
Morgan’s project empowered kids at her school who produced and sold these necklaces to realize that “anyone can help make a difference”. On the last day of school, Morgan presented the earned money to Mr. Glass and his family at the 4-6th grade awards ceremony. There was not a dry eye in the house!
We were excited to find that Fox 28 news out of South Bend, Indiana picked up the story and were on the scene to interview. The story ran in the evening news that night. It was a wonderful day!
Help us make a difference. See our “Participation” page for ways you can be a part of the Africrans project!
See the Blog post “Stash to Cash”, Nov 4, 2012, about individual contributions at the right-hand category menu. The Blog journey is written by Christi Ziebarth (Mom) as a “for more information” resource. Articles are posted once or twice weekly about recent happenings and reflective thoughts on our project. If you have a topic you wish to be expanded upon, please leave a comment to be addressed in the blog posts or updated on the Q & A Page. Community has helped make this project a success. We value your input.