Why Non Profits Need Photography By Kate Siobhan Havercroft, TGL Operations Manager
There’s a long list of modern needs for the average Non-Profit. Gone are the days of mail-out newsletters and pamphlet’s. These days, with the onset of raging social media, Smartphone’s and instant updates, many NGOs, are often operating with limited resources, and as a result they are struggling to keep up.
There are loads resources that NGO needs to utilize nowadays; websites, Social Media accounts (Facebook, Google+, twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, Reddit, Instagram, and new ones everyday), blogs, and of course a staff to keep everyday operations afloat! In the midst of all this, we, as viewers, tend to give new websites or fan pages about three seconds to prove their worth to us. It’s not our fault – we’re bombarded everyday with new requests, piles of links, and LOLCatz.
One of the biggest reasons we as viewers move along quickly are the instances when there isn’t enough visual stimulation to hold our interest. We’re a visual society now, and we can tell the difference between an even slightly dated website from a “cutting edge” one in the bat of an eye.
This brings us to just one way – of many ways – that we, at The Giving Lens, are able to step in and help some NGOs. Through media we offer compelling, timeless, meaningful images that tell a whole story at 1/1000th of a second. But how do we do this?
The Giving Lens is an organization that leads international teams, around the world, on travel photography workshops with a twist: We partner with an incredible Non-Profit doing amazing work in-country, and volunteer our photography and our skills to further their efforts. This ranges from photo-education, to documentation, to intimate portraiture, too much more. The possibilities, and the needs, are endless. When not volunteering, we run workshops at places most people only dream of going. And when it’s all over, we share up to 50% of our profits with the NGO we just worked with, along with all the images.
Images that otherwise many NGOs, especially in developing nations, would have a hard time acquiring. Images of their work, their staff, and the community they serve. Images that portray the issues at hand, the hope for the future, the purpose and goals and visions for this NGO. After our trips, and after we share profits, we share these images with them. Thousands, upon thousands of incredible, useful, meaningful images for them to use wherever they please. These images come from the professional photographers who lead our teams, but also from our participants – which range in all skills levels.
As said, this is just one way in which we give back. We can teach the staff so they can continue to do ongoing work. We can run camera drives and help set up photography clubs that keep kids in school. We can document endangered species in intimate spaces. And so much more.
Photography is such a gift, which can be taken and given in literally endless ways. It can – and does – have the ability to hold more meaning than we can imagine. It can – and is – a tangible need, of real use, to these amazing NGOs who do tireless, incredible work day in and day out.
If you are thinking “This is exactly what I never realized I wanted to do!” then you’re not alone. We take teams year-round to give themselves and their skills an intimate and tangible way to communities around the world. The causes and issues are different, the team leaders change, and the countries vary. But the constant vision in all of this is to see photography – and an international community of photographers, regardless of skill level, background, education, or gear – make a difference.
We have trips coming up to Tanzania in July, India in early November, Thailand in late November, Cambodia in December, and Nicaragua in January.
Join us for the adventure of a lifetime, full of purpose, and, of course, incredible photography!
For More Information About The Giving Lens