Giving Back as a Lake Tahoe Wedding Photographer
A portion of every wedding and portrait session booked will be donated to the non-profit of my choice for the year.
The Boys and Girls Club of Lake Tahoe aims to empower all young people to reach their full potential by providing a safe place to learn and grow, ongoing mentorship relationships with caring adult professionals and volunteers, life-enhancing programs and character development experiences, and vital and necessary afterschool and summer programs, along with free meals. The club must raise $1000 for every day they are open. They service 300 children a day, year-round. 66% of the families served by our chapter live below the California poverty line, 88% are under 12, and 78% are from single-parent families. Through partnerships with other non-profits and businesses such as SOS Outreach, Live Violence Free, and Vail Resorts, they are able to offer activities that these children wouldn’t normally have access to, such as skiing at Kirkwood, Heavenly Discovery Days, Girls Empowerment programs, free theater performances and more! The executive director of our local chapter of the Boys and Girls Club is a client of mine and I’m thrilled to support a local non-profit for 2018.
The Baltimore Dance Crews Project, a non profit created by Brian Gerardo, was my recipient for 2017. I was connected to Brian through my two 2016 grooms, Jack and Kyle. The Baltimore Dance Crew Project takes a multi-pronged approach to youth development by using hip hop dance to strengthen the relationships across generations. Students are not only engaging in dance, they’re forging relationships with older dancers who maintain careers outside of dance. The crew itself is a very necessary support network for disadvantaged and low income youth and has successfully forged positive relationships between peers and role models, leading to academic achievement, healthy lifestyles, and enhanced youth leadership.
Mary’s House was my 2016 donation recipient. Mary’s House is the creation of one of my 2015 brides, Jen Flynn. From 2008-2010, Jen lived in Vietnam as a volunteer aiding the impoverished and disadvantaged children of the country. When Jen returned home, she was inspired to do more and in January of 2012, Jen opened Mary’s House, named after her grandmother. Living in the home are 24 children ranging in age from 4-17 years old. The children come to Mary’s House through a referral by the local government. Although a few of them had a single parent or relative who had taken them in, many are orphaned and all are impoverished. Mary’s House provides them a safe, loving home environment with consistent nutrition, education, and health care.
Hope Shines was my 2015 donation recipient. Hope Shines, Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 2007 that provides disadvantaged children in Rwanda both local and foreign mentoring and support through programs focusing on education, nutrition and health. Hope Shines was founded on the belief that every child should be given the opportunity for a healthy, happy life both in mind and body and HOPE for a bright future. Two of my 2014 wedding clients, Dan and Stephanie, are the executive director and the medical advisor for the organization.
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