We have an inspiring story to share with you: a story of unimaginable tragedy that spawned an exciting and culturally relevant idea. The idea was simple: Provide cameras to the children of one of Kathmandu’s most progressive earthquake refugee camps and teach them how to document their daily lives. Within a short amount of time, countless images taken by the children revealed their triumph over adversity, unity with one another, and wellspring of talent. This discovery not only touched our hearts but also inspired us to make the following dream a reality.
With this Kickstarter campaign, we want to provide a once in a lifetime opportunity for these children by recognizing their photography and bringing them to the USA. We want them to see first-hand how their stories and actions can impact not only their own lives, but also the lives of others – that they can be instrumental in creating positive change at any age. Together with Looking Glass Photo and Jeff Greenwald, YOU will help make this dream come true and play a lasting role in the future of Camp Hope's families.
• Overall $20,000 Goal: Reaching this goal means we achieved the dream! We'll be able to fly some of the kids out to tell their stories in person. And of course, everything that is laid out in the $10,000 goal below!
• Base $10,000+ Goal: This goal helps ensure money raised will make a difference in these kids’ lives. Your pledge will help rebuild the children's school. In addition, your pledge will support photo shows and silent auctions for the children's pictures that tell their stories.
The Story of Camp Hope
Camp Hope is a refugee camp in Nepal and is home to more than 350 people—88 of them children. Families were relocated here after the April and May 2015 earthquakes destroyed their villages in the Sindhupalchowk district of Nepal. More than 3,000 people died and 96.4% of the homes were lost. These people are still living in Camp Hope today (more than a year after the earthquakes), while the long and complex process of geo-locating, designing, and rebuilding their villages take place. Our own part in this story began when well-known travel journalist Jeff Greenwald (who has been reporting from Nepal since 1979) came to Looking Glass Photo seeking used camera donations for Camp Hope’s kids.
"While I was visiting Camp Hope in the Fall of 2015, one of the kids—a very smart and completely charming 10-year-old girl named Laxmi Sherpa—asked to borrow my camera. I shoot with a Sony NEX-6, not the world’s most delicate or expensive camera. Still, such a request would normally give me pause. But Laxmi had impressed me with her honesty and sense of responsibility—so I handed it over. She ran off with a group of her friends, and brought it back to me about half an hour later. A couple of days later, editing at my hotel, I saw their shots for the first time. I was floored by the composition and intimacy captured on their first go-rounds with a camera. I was also inspired by what might be possible, and where this could lead. That afternoon was the genesis of my project with Looking Glass."
Five cameras were donated by Looking Glass and delivered to the children of Camp Hope in January 2016. Since then the children have produced thousands of images of their lives, families, and community. With ongoing training from respected Nepali photojournalists and foreign visitors (including Jeff Greenwald, who returned to Camp Hope several times in March/April 2016), the children are building an amazing database of photos that will be edited by Greenwald and volunteers from Looking Glass. The work of these talented young photographers will be part of the Kickstarter-funded phase of this project and is described in the next section.
Outcome of Your Generosity & Support
- We’re not in this to make money; we’re in this to make dreams come true. All money raised by this Kickstarter campaign, beyond its direct costs, will fund the goals listed above. An itemized breakdown of costs can be found below.
- You’ll receive something special: Your very own piece of the Camp Hope story. Please see the reward tiers at the right!
Cost Breakdown for Flying the Kids Out
“Optimistic & Motivating Piano, Guitar & Drums Music” by Dean Kurt / Pond5.com
Images provided courtesy of Looking Glass Photo & Camera, Jeff Greenwald, Laxmi Sherpa, Ang Tshering Sherpa, Pema Sherpa, and Simran Sharma.
Risks and challenges
Risk Resolution 1: In the unforeseen circumstance that one of the children scheduled to fly out cannot make it we will have understudies to take their place. In regards to the VISAs, Jeff Greenwald has numerous contacts and friends in Nepal to help ensure the proper documentation is created and provided.
Risk Resolution 2: Digital printing techniques and materials used for both the rewards and the photo show need to maintain consistent quality. Looking Glass Photo has an in-house master printer that will oversee quality assurance.
Risk Resolution 3: Securing three photo show venues has a slight risk due to unforeseen circumstances that could prevent a specific date at a specific venue for a show. However, Looking Glass and Jeff Greenwald have a strong network in the San Francisco Bay Area and feel confident that at the very least, two venues will definitely take place.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (60 days)