© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2020

High school business dream becomes reality

Jessica Swan
little book of smiles
The original Little Book of Smiles team: Luknam Worathongchai, Daniella Saeru Totoa, Samantha Fairhall, Hannah Trieu, Jemesa Landers.  Little Book of Smiles Campaign

The Little Book of Smiles campaign was born in a Year 13 classroom with five young teenagers.

The book is the fruit of many years of perseverance and commitment.

The planning began as a Year 13 business project in 2018. The five young girls decided it was important to help facilitate the conversation around mental health.

Here, in a Middleton Grange School classroom, the dream of writing a book was born. 

The process has included many avenues of fundraising including Quiz Nights and a grant from Coffee Culture through the Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme. 

Chief executive of the company, Samantha Fairhall, said mental wellbeing needed more attention. The purpose of The Little Book of Smiles was to provide a safe space for individuals to talk and process their mental health challenges. 

"This is something all youth and young adults face, and people are too afraid to speak up or come forward if they need help. By writing a book it will allow people to express their thoughts and feelings by writing them down, instead of keeping them to themselves," she said.

The interactive style of the book covers cover mind, body and soul.

From recipes to drawing pages to inspirational quotes, Fairhall said the aim was to be a "platform for people who may be struggling in any way in this area of their life".

The book is set to be published before mid-August with pre-orders available now.