Monday, May 17, 2010


  I have always had a goal to do charitable work, especially for the poor.  I found myself thinking, "One day in the future when I have more money, more to give, more time, then I will make it a priority."  I have decided that I don't have to have more than I know what to do with in order to give away, to share my blessings, so I am starting now.
  I have decided to donate 30% of all of my sitting fees to charity.  I am not going to increase my rate to accommodate this interest.  I am hoping that this can be a win-win situation for everyone involved.  I get to achieve a  goal, be creative using photography and offer a service.  You get some beautiful portraits of your family, children, reunions, marriages, engagements and birthdays while giving to charity for the same (or less ) than hiring another photographer.  And most importantly we, together, can make a difference in the world.  A real difference. 
  I have chosen 2 charities to pick from: The Central Asia Institute which builds schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and Community Action - which is the food bank for Utah County and also offers community programs.

Charity Information

Central Asia Institute
One Man's Mission to Promote Peace....One School at a Time
  After a failed attempt to climb K2 in 1993, Greg Mortenson accidentally arrived in Korphe, Pakistan - an impoverished community of mud huts isolated high in the Karakoram region.  When he asked to see the village school he was led to an open field where children scratched notes with a stick on the ground.
  Mortenson promised the village nurmadhar (chief) that he would be back to build them a school to educate not only boys, but girls also.  To date the CAI has built, staffed and funded 141 schools and programs in remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan, with one of the lowest overheads of any non-profit organization.
  In places like Pakistan and Afghanistan public funds dry up before they are used for public education. Private schools are only afforded by the super wealthy.  Many boys are sent to a madrassa - an Islamic extremist boarding house because they get an 'education' and room and board for free.  "They're churning out generation after generation of brainwashed students and thinking 20, 40, even 60 years ahead to a time when their armies of extremism will have the numbers to swarm over Pakistan and the rest of the Islamic world."  The CAI schools provide a balanced education for boys and girls who cannot afford to pay, and a choice for the first time in history.
  The CAI believes that the key to winning the war on terror is education.  The organization is helping rebuild and restructure areas that have been fought over, demolished and long forgotten by the rest of the world.
"In times of war I have heard people say, "We will win - God is on our side.", but he is not.  God is on the side of the widow and the orphan."
  I lived in India with my family growing up, so Greg Mortenson's story hit a nerve with me.  We, as North Americans think that we understand what the word "poor" means, but we don't. Thank you for your support in this cause that is truly changing the future, opening doors to women and putting a stop to unfounded hate through education.
  You can read a full account of how this organization came to be in the novel "Three Cups of Tea".  Please check out for more information or to donate.

Community Action

  Community Action Services and Food Bank is dedicated to fostering self-reliance in individuals, families and communities, and they do this by providing a variety of programs and solutions designed to address local needs and issues. 
  One branch of this organization is the local food bank.  Although it is wonderful to donate food items for  families to pick up, monetary donations go a lot further in th fight of feeding Utah's needy.  Direct funding decreases the amount of drivers, trucks, gas, appointmenst and so forth required.  Just $1 can provide up to 30 lbs of food.
  You can donate or lean about all of the local programs Community Action offers on their website: