I am really excited and looking forward to this Sunday. It’s just a few more days till our special event at the McGill Rose Garden to benefit The Lunch Project. I’ll be photographing special portrait mini-sessions in honor of Mother’s Day. Proceeds will be donated to The Lunch Project. The garden is a beautiful oasis just north of Uptown Charlotte, at 940 North Davidson Street. It began in 1950 when Helen McGill planted two rose bushes to beautify the square block her husband Henry had purchased, which was used as a coal yard. Over the next three decades, numerous rose bushes and beds were planted. In 1967, the garden opened to the public on Mother’s Day, and that tradition continues today. What a wonderful way to celebrate Mother’s Day with a walk in the garden, bursting with colorful rose bushes and other blooms. When you visit the garden, be sure to stop in and see Karisa Pennell, and her beautiful floral designs, or take a class from her at Nectar – the cute shop you first walk into at the Garden.
Earlier this year I had the pleasure of meeting Rebecca Wofford and Kristin Steele, who started The Lunch Project in 2011. They gave a very moving presentation at The Charity League of Charlotte and I was drawn to their cause ~ and how small actions can make a huge difference in the life of a child, a school and a village. While visiting Tanzania, Rebecca connected with the Lamenyanta Primary School near Arusha Town in the Kilimanajaro Region. She discovered that while enrollments are increasing in primary schools due to a government initiative, the support and infrastructure is lacking. Each teacher typically has a classroom of 125 children – with dirt floors, leaky roofs and not enough books. Those children walk great distances to school and are often hungry, struggling to keep awake and learn. Providing a hot lunch to these children can give them the energy to concentrate and stay in school. Lunches are cooked over a wood fire by their mothers ~ which allows them to be involved in their child’s school and earn a small income. It’s simple, and it works. It costs $85 to feed 950 children one lunch. Rebecca and Kristin started by providing one lunch a week. One year later, they are up to two lunches a week. And The Lunch Project provides an opportunity for families in the United States to teach their own children about philanthropy by sponsoring a lunch and reaching across the oceans to make a global connection with school children in Tanzania. Most recently, The Lunch Project has presented in local elementary schools and through an age-appropriate, educator-designed curriculum, they hope to inspire children to engage in philanthropy and become more globally aware.
Karisa, Rebecca, Kristin and I will join forces on Sunday to provide a fun afternoon of special portrait mini-sessions. The garden will be open to families who have booked sessions, to stroll around before and after their portraits. Through our efforts we’ll be able to sponsor several lunches at the Lamenyanta Primary School.
So the good news is we are fully booked for our event on Sunday – but if you are interested, I can put you on our waiting list. If enough people sign up, we may open up another day of mini portrait sessions. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to be placed on our waiting list. …..And we’ll keep our fingers crossed for perfect weather!