Pay it Forward.

Tonight I should be posting Rosie Mae’s 9 month photo, as today was her 9 month birthday.  The shot has been taken and the post is almost ready — but I’m interrupting the expected program for something big and a little different.

This evening, I happened to mention on Facebook that my sister Katie is fundraising for a cause near and dear to our hearts.  Here is what I wrote on the Irish Eyes Photography Facebook Page:

in 2005, I lost my brother. I was 23 years old. My sister Katie was 17. Being a teenager, she had a hard time grieving and struggled with such a devastating loss (we all did, but for Katie at such a young age, it was difficult). Now, my beautiful and kind sister uses the strength she has to help other children who struggle with losing a loved one. Comfort Zone Camp is a camp where children who have experienced tragedy are matched up with grown-ups who have been down the same hard road. Through one on one and group get-togethers over the span of a weekend, everyone finds healing and even some peace. If Rosie Mae were older, I would definitely sign up to be a counselor. For now, I am supporting my sister in every way I can. I think it’s an incredible idea and it makes me proud to know someone involved.

Katie is currently trying to raise money to help children who can’t afford the camp be able to attend. If you have the ability, a donation would be so deeply appreciated.
http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/KatieMulligan/2013CZCPolarPlunge#.UOX-5x7WvHU.facebook

thank you for taking the time to read this extra personal post.

I honestly wasn’t expecting anything to come of it and was more interested in spreading the word about this wonderful camp.  Then, something happened.

Within an HOUR of my posting, Katie not only reached her goal, but surpassed it. And, continues to surpass it.  There is no limit to how much she can raise; the more she raises the more funds are available to help kids who need this therapeutic camp.

I am humbled and touched that so many of you donated.  I’ve always known the Irish Eyes Photography page was filled with wonderful, kind, and compassionate fans; your growing support, comments, and “likes” make my day every day.

So, it’s time to pay it forward.  I’ve been cooking up an idea like this for a few months now, and this evening’s turn of events have made me realize it’s the perfect time.

Here’s the deal.

I am going to donate a FREE ONE HOUR PHOTO SESSION to a deserving family.

Not only will they get their session for free, but I’ll be donating prints to them as well, and, with the help of the fan base on my Facebook page, we can all rally together to donate some more awesome photo products on top of that (TBD; we’ll see what’s on the family’s wish list).

How this is going to work:

YOU have to nominate a family.  If you know of a family that deserves a photo session, let me know.  Send me an account of their story and why you think they deserve to win.  Maybe they’ve been down their own tough road and came out OK so they need to commemorate their journey.  Maybe they give back to their community all the time so now it’s their turn.  You tell me.  Email me your nomination at kerryrailey@gmail.com.  I’ll need your full name and the name of the person/family you are nominating.  I think it would be fun if you didn’t tell them they were nominated so we/you can surprise them when they win.  Of course, you want to be sure this is something they’d want (some people are camera shy).

As for a deadline, I was going to use my sister’s plunge as the inspiration but then realized how close it is to Valentine’s Day.  So, let’s use Valentine’s Day!  What a wonderful way to show your friend you love them.

And that’s it!  I am looking forward to this!  Let’s make someone’s day and capture some beautiful memories for them.

The Details Once Again:

THE GIVEAWAY:

A one hour portrait session with Irish Eyes Photography

HOW TO ENTER:

Send an email to: Kerryrailey@gmail.com and tell me the story of your nominated party. Include names so that we may contact you and them once a winner is chosen.

DEADLINE: 

Valentine’s Day!  2/14/13

Be sure to follow me on Facebook so you can see how this unfolds!

And, if you can, please be sure to donate to my sister’s cause, as that was the push I needed to set up this giveaway.  It’s unfortunate that so many kids have reason to attend this camp, but, since they do, let’s make sure anyone who can benefit from it is able to go.

With excitement and anticipation for your nominations,

Kerry:)

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