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Sonoma Strong: FREE Photoshoots for Fire Relief

Oct 18th, 2017

As I write this, the wildfires that killed at least 40 people, burnt over 200,000 acres, destroyed 5,700 structures, and forced nearly 100,000 people to flee their homes in the past 8 days are still burning.

I feel very fortunate to have been safe here in Petaluma, but watching my community and the homes, businesses, livelihoods, and dreams of so many friends burn to the ground is not an experience I’d wish on my worst enemy. It seems like everyone I know knows at least one person who’s lost everything. The grief has been as thick as the smoke here.

So, in an effort to give back to the community that has given me so much, I am once again joining a growing number of North Bay photographers in offering FREE one-hour photoshoots to the first five people to donate $400 or more to the organizations below.

 

How it works:

  1. Donate $400 (or more) to one of the following organizations
    • Undocufund:  An estimated 28,000 undocumented immigrants live and work in Sonoma County. Unlike other victims of the fires that have devastated Sonoma County, undocumented immigrants do not qualify for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Lack of immigration status, limited English proficiency, and fear of immigration enforcement will also impede their access to disaster-relief services, even when they are eligible.
    • The Schoolbox Project: In addition to our work with refugees overseas, The Schoolbox Project mobilizes and trains volunteers to provide emergency aid to victims of hurricanes, wildfires, tornadoes, floods, and other natural disasters in the U.S. We stay behind after our initial response for up to three months to provide child friendly spaces to areas where disaster has caused trauma and displacement.
  2. Send proof of donation to: lschneiderphoto(at)gmail.com
  3. Voila! Let’s schedule your photoshoot.

Offer is good for a one hour digital photoshoot anywhere in Sonoma County and includes ten final high resolution files (additional photos will be available for purchase). Should you choose to donate and transfer your photoshoot to a fire victim, you will receive a $100 credit towards a photoshoot of your own.

How else can you help?

Start drinking.

No, seriously. If you aren’t able to donate $400, I totally get it. Buy wine from Sonoma or Napa counties instead. Wineries were ravaged during harvest, so existing inventory sales are going to have to sustain them as they rebuild.

Buy from local artists.

There are so many incredible creatives in Sonoma County. The holidays are just around the corner and shopping local has an incredible impact.

Say yes to bodywork.

We have tremendous massage therapists, acupuncturists, and herbalists ready to help you take a load off. Self-care in times of trauma is crucial. Treat yourself.

Hire local.


If you’re having a wedding or an event in wine country, don’t fly your vendors in. There are insanely talented photographers, planners, design companies, caterers, etc. in the North Bay. Hire them and help the local industry thrive.

Support grassroots organizations.

There are so many local organizations doing amazing work. Look for the helpers and help them help others.

Recovery is going to be a marathon, not a sprint.

But we are in it for the long haul, and together, we can, and will rebuild.
#sonomastrong

COMMENTS

  • Michelle Wagner
    Oct 19th, 2017 - 8:30 pm - REPLY

    What a great way to donate!

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