The coloring book includes resources for immigrants and refugees as well as space for note taking. Photo courtesy Natalia Padilla

Illustrations by Vickery Meadow Youth Development Foundation scholars can be found in the new bilingual coloring book, “LOCAL.” 

Alongside the illustrations, “LOCAL” offers guidance to new Dallas residents, specifically immigrants and refugees. Curated poetry by local author Edyka Chilome can also be found in the book. 

Natalia Padilla, a Dallas-based graphic designer and founder of DGSN FOR US, led the effort behind “LOCAL.” She received a $15,000 grant from the City of Dallas to cover half the book’s costs. 

The grant allowed Padilla to offer a conceptual illustration class for 10 migrant scholars at the Vickery Meadow Youth Development Foundation. The scholars come from various countries, including Thailand, Myanmar, Guatemala and Mexico.

With Padilla’s background in advertising and branding, her goal was to offer a book with illustrations that also served a function. She said she identifies with kids’ love for drawing, coloring and learning.

“It’s my love for illustration, my passion for education and trying to figure out: How can I design something easier for someone that probably has ADHD or has dyslexia?” Padilla said.

The book comes in English and Spanish and has resources divided into seven categories: civic engagement, communication network, culture, education, health, legal advice and public transportation. 

“I think what makes the book specifically targeted and designed for immigrants and refugees is because there are several nonprofits, the Human Rights Initiative, Raices and Catholic charities, that do provide their services to them in particular,” Padilla said.

With the book’s wealth of information, Padilla is working on donating 1,000 copies to various immigrant families through 10 Dallas nonprofits mentioned in the book. 

Those who purchase one copy “LOCAL,” which comes at $16 a pop, one book will be donated. Padilla also designed a sweatshirt for purchase that will, in turn, donate two books. So far, 22 books have been shipped, she said. 

To contribute to Padilla’s “Buy a Book, Gift a Book” donation campaign and to learn more about “LOCAL,” visit