An Open Letter to the Help-Portrait Community

//An Open Letter to the Help-Portrait Community

An Open Letter to the Help-Portrait Community

Dear Help-Portrait Community …

Today is an unprecedented day in Help-Portrait’s history. Please, take a 5 minutes to read through this important post.

After three years, 25,000 photographers, 56 countries, 700 events, and giving away nearly 170,000 portraits to those who are less fortunate, the amazing success of Help-Portrait has never been more evident than it is today.

We’ve all worked hard to make this movement a reality. Countless hours, dollars and emotional investments have been made to ensure that people know that they matter…to you…to us…to the world.

The stories have been numerous…

  • Prostitutes have quit decades of prostitution after being loved for a day with no judgement and seeing a portrait that represented who they used to be and who they could be again.
  • A mom who was murdered after she and her children had their picture taken at a Help-Portrait event leaves only memories, and a picture for them to remember her by. Pictures that Shelly took, and GAVE away.
  • The mother of 4 who had recently lost her husband now has her first-ever family portrait after we were able to combine his photo with hers and her children’s.

The list of stories could go on, and they do. You have your own, no doubt. And while these stories are touching, amazing and nothing short of awe-inspiring, we immediately think of the stories that have yet to be written. The people who have yet to share in the Help-Portrait experience. We, like you, want to do more.

But, we need your help.

When Help-Portrait was just an idea, a small team of people rallied to make it a reality. These people put thousands of hours into making sure that the word was spread, events were booked, stats were captured, press was present, ink and paper were provided, and photographers, assistants, volunteers and makeup artists were present around the world.

Since then, the time and demands on the team have increased significantly. We receive thousands of emails, requests and other unique needs (even legal issues) on a regular basis. Frankly, our core volunteer team is running out of time to give because the demands have exceeded our ability to meet the growing needs of our community.

The team has BIG ideas on how to help you, the community, do events much better and more efficiently while reaching a broader base of less fortunate people. Unfortunately, we simply can’t do it all with our current setup.

So, we need you, to help, Help-Portrait.

The time is now to have our community help make Help-Portrait a household name. That means a focused effort and a small central team to better serve all of our event leaders. By taking this next step we can grow to be a powerful household name like the Red Cross, The Salvation Army, United Way and others.

The only way we can do that is if you, the community, step in.

Presently, there are more than 25,500 people in our community. If each of you donated $5US, we could raise enough funds to hire a small team of people while covering some desperately needed developmental costs for our community and donation management systems. Can we say, “yeah baby!”

Would you please, take a moment and donate today?

Then, help us spread the word via social media using the hashtag #helpportrait. Need tweet ideas? Click here.

Without you, Help-Portrait would be nothing. So, thank you. I am forever grateful, and humbled to be a part of this movement.

–Jeremy & the Help-Portrait team


By |2016-12-03T07:39:53+00:00August 15th, 2012|Updates|26 Comments

About the Author:

Cara (@carandavis) is the online editor for Help-Portrait and lives in Nashville, TN.


  1. Joanne August 15, 2012 at 7:56 PM

    You got it. Worth way more than five bucks. So many lives touched.

  2. Jeff Krutsinger August 15, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    I would love to help as a photographer. Years ago I went to a low end community outreach Christmas gathering sponsored in part by a local church and the police department I work for. We took family portraits of anyone interested and had them blown up to an 11X14 and framed (all processing and frames purchased at Costco) and we gave them to these families. This happened when a woman who worked with this children noticed that many families only had a polaroid photo of their family proudly on display in their homes from the previous years event. She thought about how nice it would be to offer professional portraits to these needy families and I was blessed to have the opportunity to set up a studio and capture these families. My family (including my 9yo daughter) worked together to shoot hundreds of portraits that day and I would love to do it again. Im a local Southern California photographer so if I can offer my services for this great cause, please let me know.

  3. Ruli Yanto August 15, 2012 at 10:06 PM


  4. Charity from Suffolk, VA August 15, 2012 at 10:11 PM

    Done & Done. :)

  5. Brandie Craig August 16, 2012 at 12:28 AM


  6. Ray August 16, 2012 at 1:57 AM

    I would donate my time as a professional photographer or image editor but I cannot make a monetary contribution at this time. If you know of anyone in need in the Windsor, (Ontario) Canada area, I would be willing to donate my time and services.

  7. Bryan B - Indianapolis August 16, 2012 at 2:49 AM

    Having led a volunteer organization and organized events to support the community, I can only imagine the time, effort, and other resources it takes this small group of dedicated folks. I’m more than happy to contribute to help create the path that lets this team focus on continuing to build the excitement and exposure (ha!) for Help-Portrait.

  8. Jeff Clough August 16, 2012 at 3:13 AM

    I’m willing to help out with money, but what I’d REALLY like is for Help-Portrait to get a better web site. I tried to connect with some of the Atlanta groups last year. I got signed up, but I could. not. figure. out. the message boards. I’m far from new to computers, forums, message boards, and all this modern stuff, but it beat me, and I wasn’t able to lend a hand.

  9. Jeremy Cowart August 16, 2012 at 4:08 AM

    Jeff, that’s exactly the idea behind needing more money. We need a better website. To get a better website, we need money. It all comes down to overhead costs. :) – jeremy, founder

  10. Matthias Hombauer August 16, 2012 at 8:30 AM

    Done! Greetings from Vienna/Austria and I would love to help out with some portraits.

  11. Luis Macedo August 16, 2012 at 10:08 AM

    Doing everything to spread this… This is an idea worth fighting for…
    Helping other’s, in any way possible and even through photography it’s a powerfull inspirational force and a life changer!

  12. Chenghao August 16, 2012 at 1:28 PM

    All the best Jeremy. Hope the small token (which I would have easily spent on a meal) would do much more with Help-Portrait.

  13. Barbie August 16, 2012 at 3:30 PM

    I too give my time to take Christmas photos of families in women’s shelter and headstart kiddos. I would love to help extend the cause to Alaska!!

  14. ChrisKay August 16, 2012 at 6:01 PM

    how do I donate $$$?

  15. L Scott August 16, 2012 at 6:22 PM

    Willing to donate by services as a photographer/assist. Redondo Beach to San Pedro to Gardena and points between… South Bay California. Great project; I believe in the dream! Peace~Joy~Love

  16. Swee August 17, 2012 at 11:45 AM

    I would be happy to donate my time as photographer.I am in San Francisco.

  17. Mike Rachel August 17, 2012 at 11:44 AM

    Wow, its like taking habitat for humanity & turning the house into a home-Sure, I’ll Donate!

  18. Pat August 17, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    Is there a way to link Help Portrait to my website? A button or something? Any help? Would be happy to help spread the word.

  19. […] Help-Portrait: […]

  20. Mary August 27, 2012 at 8:41 PM

    You got it!! AWESOME work guys—and what a remarkable example you are to everyone. It is truly a gift when we give back….Keep up the great work!!

  21. Jairo August 28, 2012 at 3:28 AM

    I will be happy to donate time as photographer right now, I’m located in the north bay area of San Francisco

  22. Agustin Lopez August 29, 2012 at 1:58 AM

    I want to keep doing the portraits and if $5.00 helps

  23. […] Here is the open-letter from Jeremy Cowart: […]

  24. […] are wonderful stories coming out of this movement. Prostitutes have given up their trade after many years, because they finally felt loved and realised who they could be again from looking at their image. […]

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