I’ve witnessed the exploitation and discrimination firsthand over the two decades we’ve been working in these communities to deliver culturally competent health education, screening, follow-up, patient navigation and research through PROJECT HOFFNUNG - the Amish and Mennonite Breast Health Project. I’ve read the printed words, heard presentations and seen the shows full of erroneous information. This community has been inaccurately depicted and stereotyped for far too long.
I KNEW WE HAD TO STEP UP AND GIVE THE COMMUNITY A VOICE.
We have often said we so wish people could come into the many homes we’ve been in and sit at the kitchen tables of the families we’ve gotten to know and meet the friends made over the past 20 years. We have come to know about the lives of countless individuals in the Amish, Mennonite and Plain communities – we know them not as "Amish" but as mothers, preachers, sons and daughters, teachers, farmers, carpenters, fathers – and more.
This Kickstarter campaign will allow the Amish, Mennonite and Plain communities to tell their story in a respectful way free of the stereotypes and the financial interests that have shaped the public lens. This initiative has the potential to be a profound catalyst for social change. Your support can be a part of that momentum and will allow for a continuing dialogue that shapes how these communities are perceived, interacted with and treated.
What emerged during a quiet conversation with one particular Amish bishop in late 2014 has grown into a community initiative across dozens of settlements crisscrossing the state of Ohio. We’ve been given unprecedented access to these communities because they know and trust us personally. Talitha Tarro began capturing images in the spring of 2015. Excitement and enthusiasm continues to grow.
About the Book
First and foremost, it is important to emphasize that this photography book is these communities’ visual story to tell. All of those who agreed to be photographed will be a part of the selection process, along with religious leaders and other community members. And, they are having the opportunity for the first time ever to decide, “What would we like you to know about us?” Participants' thoughts and comments about the images will be included to share insight in their culture.
Final design, layout, and production are planned for a November 2017 release. We are creating a visually dazzling coffee table volume that will be 9 x 12" (22.86 x 30.48 cm) and estimated at 126 pages.
Where Kickstarter Comes In
Your support will allow us to finish production and design the book. The funds raised will allow us to complete photography and post production editing, cover transportation and travel costs to coordinate communication and the selection process across the state for the final photographs that will be produced in a coffee table book. We anticipate a mix of one-on-one and group discussions throughout the selection process. Many of us have already and will continue to volunteer and contribute our time and expertise to keep project costs as modest as possible. We fundamentally believe in this initiative and the power of social change! We sincerely appreciate your support at any level of giving.
About The Rewards
In addition to the limited edition photographs featured above, we are offering a stunning photo postcard update on our progress, our 2017 PROJECT HOFFNUNG Calendar, handcrafted baskets and quilts by members of the community along with a once in a lifetime opportunity for a true cultural immersion in the world’s largest Amish settlement. Please take a look at the rewards photos and pledge descriptions.
Shipping costs are included in the pledge amount for U.S. backers. No surprises…
Risks and challenges
The risks and challenges for the successful completion of this project are relatively low overall. Actual photography is well underway and the community member photo selection process is beginning shortly. The one foreseeable challenge to relentlessly manage is schedule – or meeting the photo book delivery deadline. This is a statewide project with an iterative review process involving many individuals. We recognize the scope of this project will require a focused project management approach regarding schedule. We also have a network of over 20 volunteers statewide in PROJECT HOFFNUNG who can assist with transportation, communications, meeting coordination and mailings.
Packaging and shipping of the rewards and book will be handled by our network of volunteers, community members and the PROJECT HOFFNUNG team. We are committed to an efficient and timely delivery of all rewards.
If we surpass our goal, we will dedicate the balance toward either a larger photo book (e.g. an 11 x 16” book) or a photo exhibition of Their Life through Their Lens-the Amish, Mennonite and Plain People. The exhibit would ideally be timed to launch along with our biannual national conference, Addressing the Needs of Amish and Plain Communities' scheduled for June 2017. All contributions will be dedicated solely to the project.
We thank you for your support at any level of giving! Please share our Kickstarter Project with your friends, family and colleagues.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)