The Stafford Foundation’s annual Give Before You Get outreach program motivates homeless and other individuals who are normally on the receiving end of charitable programs, to give back and care for others regardless of their own circumstances. Through Give Before You Get, dozens of homeless and underserved volunteers have distributed thousands of gifts to wounded military personnel, hospital patients and nursing home residents who seldom have visitors.
The volunteers, who are program participants from shelters and other outreach facilities in Washington, D.C., Virginia and Maryland, enthusiastically brought cheer and words of encouragement to others who are also experiencing difficulties in life. The photo contest allowed them to capture their experiences using digital cameras donated by The Stafford Foundation and submit their selections to the photo contest.
The Grand Prize winner of $5,000 was Carpenter’s Shelter for a picture that captures a genuine connection between people from two different worlds. Prizes for originality, creativity and composition went to Interfaith Works – Carroll House, N Street Village and Central Union Mission respectively. The winning photographs can be viewed on The Stafford Foundation’s web site (https://www.thestaffordfoundation.org/
Mary-Parker Lamm, deputy director, Carpenter’s Shelter described the experience. “What I couldn't anticipate was the genuine feeling of joy that I saw in our clients. An enormous smile never left their faces as they worked diligently to ensure that each door had been knocked on and that each person at the senior living community had received a special gift and that they had the opportunity to visit with them. As our visit ended and we were headed back to our van, one of the clients turned to me and said, ‘Ms. Mary, that was just so cool!’ He hugged me and thanked me for taking them! They may have left the shelter feeling as though they had very little to give to anyone but they returned confident in the fact that, no matter the circumstances, they have a lot to give. We are grateful to have participated in Give Before You Get and to have our photograph chosen for the Grand Prize is the icing on the cake!”
Chosen by a volunteer panel of professional photographers who each specialize in a combination of journalism, the arts, portrait photography and teaching, the winning pictures capture the emotions and the giving that took place between participants. The judges were Matt Mendelsohn; nationally-renown professional photographer;
About The Stafford Foundation
The Stafford Foundation collaborates with and invests in capacity-building efforts that equip the underserved through programs that provide health, education, training and faith-based mission support. Give Before You Get provides the underserved, those who are normally on the receiving end of services, to give to others. This is an important step on their path to self-sufficiency. Give Before You Get was founded in 2010 by The Stafford Foundation (http://www.thestaffordfoundation.org/
From Burkina Faso, Africa to Fairfax, Virginia, the Stafford Foundation supports programs for education and training, health care, the arts and Christian ministry. For more information or to donate, please visit www.TheStaffordFoundation.org,
Please contact Lisa C. Vogt at 703-689-9849 for additional information.