Saturday, November 13, 2010

how it all started

My freshman year at Grand Valley, my roommate and best friend Kim convinced me to sign up for an Alternative Spring Break trip through the school. ASB is a group that sends college students all over the east side of the country to help with different issues. When you sign up, you specify what issues you would like to help with (ex: hunger and homelessness, wildlife rescue, domestic violence, etc.), and later on when you meet your group for the first time, you find out where you are going. 

Along with testing the waters with ASB, I had also started going to a new church, St. Matthew in Cascade, MI. In August of my freshman year, Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and other parts of the south. The church organized a group to go down and help over Christmas break in Kiln, I signed up. 

There is a distinct moment in my mind after the trip to Kiln that I remember sitting at my Grandma Ruth's house, going through the pictures with my aunts and trying to explain all that happened on the trip. I was frantically trying to tell them every detail and became overwhelmed and frustrated. I didn't have the words to communicate the damage that we saw, and I wanted people to understand it so badly, so that they would help too.

Throughout the rest of my time at GVSU, I participated in two more ASB trips, and felt that same frustration every time. I came home after every trip feeling like I didn't do enough, and wanted to do more.

Since graduating last December, I was blessed to find two amazing jobs. I have found that it's easy to get caught up in "real life" and think of those trips and feelings as part of my college years. But something has been pulling at my heart lately and I can't do nothing anymore. I don't want to let my passion to help people end with college because that's where it was easy to sign up for trips and create projects to raise awareness.

So here we are. I'm starting this blog. And I'm going to make it so easy for you to help other people, that it's impossible for you NOT to help. I am not asking you to donate to every cause I blog about, or to give away your life savings. I'm asking you to just choose one. Choose one and pass the blog name to someone else, and maybe they'll choose one, and send it to someone else. 

I believe now more than ever that God made me a good photographer to help people, and raise awareness for problems we might not think about every day. And this is how I'm going to do it. So subscribe to this blog, post it, forward it, follow it, email it. 

Lets be the change. Lets make the difference.  

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