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Don't Forget Tsunami Victims

Radio show host John Tesh and his wife, actress Connie Sellecca, traveled to Sri Lanka in January along with their children, Prima, 10, and Gib, 23, to help tsunami victims. They took part in an effort headed by the humanitarian group, "Operation Blessing."

"Can one family go over there and really make a difference?" Selleca tells The Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm that was the main question they asked themselves as a family when they were offered the opportunity to join the humanitarian group and report on the condition of the victims.

"That was a big lesson to us is that you can," Selleca says. "You can't sit back and say, 'We can't help everybody.' But we realized as a family, we could help some people."

After their trip, they put together a book, "Shades of Blue: The Tsunami Children's Relief Project." In it, they describe the people they met, the stories they told, how they tried to help them and how this trip gave them as a family more than they gave. All of the proceeds will go to "the Tsunami Children's Relief Project."

Once in Sri Lanka, Tesh says, they weren't sure what they were supposed to be doing. "Connie takes a look at the situation and said, 'Let's have these kids (about 150 kids) do artwork of the experience of the tsunami. They are still having nightmares.' So we sent out for paper and crayons and the kids started crafting these masterpieces."

Click here to see some pages of "Shades of Blue."

"I knew enough just from being a mom that they needed to get these images out," Selleca says. " We didn't have enough blue crayons to go around. That's what they wanted to do. They wanted to draw the water that was engulfing their homes."

Showing one of the children's pictures she points out "these images of these very, very expressive faces of people, possibly their family members, possibly themselves, struggling to survive. And some of them may not have survived."

And yet she notes it was amazing to them how the children, led by her son Gib, took to the games he started playing with them.

"I was expecting to be doing manual labor and helping with the cleanup," Gib Tesh says. "A good portion of that was done, and they hadn't started rebuilding. We went to relief camps and I gravitated toward the children and started playing silly games and throwing balls with them."

Selleca notes, "Play is a wonderful form of therapy in that situation because it helps the children focus on the here and now with optimism."

So now their aim is to carry on the promise they made to the survivors: Not let others forget.

John Tesh says there is a reason why they are keeping their book out of the bookstores.

"We want to make sure each and every dollar goes to the families and the kids," he says. "We're also starting a program in September where elementary schools and church schools -- these kids are selling it hand to hand. You can get more information on the Web site. It's going to be a curriculum as well."

Selleca adds, "It's a tool for parents to discuss this horrible tragedy with their children."

To buy "Shades of Blue," click here.