I recently wrote a piece that encouraged photographers to do more charity work. I was happy to see that the article was largely well-received. The number of photographers asking how they could volunteer their skills was even more pleasing—this gave me an idea. I’ll round up some resources and ideas to help photographers get out there and do some charity work.
Facebook Groups for Charity Work
Whatever you think about Facebook, it is a great place to get connected. The search function brings up plenty of groups that need volunteers. Simply search “volunteer in [your area],” and something will undoubtedly come up (it has worked for me). In the digital era, many organizations and local centers that need volunteers want the expertise of a photographer. Good photography helps them grow their social channels.
Local Shelters for Charity Work
If you’re an animal lover, you may want to check out the local animal shelters in your area. Those who aim to find animals a happy home will benefit from some quality photographs of them. Not only will it help the shelter, but it will also likely help you. There’s plenty to suggest being around animals can improve your mental health and well-being.
Volunteer Encounter for Charity Work
If you want to photograph bigger animals than the type you keep at home, check out Volunteer Encounter. The organization has projects worldwide, allowing you to explore new lands and cultures while also doing meaningful work. You’ll need to cover expenses, but this is normal with this type of organization. If you have money, then this can be an experience that will last you a lifetime.
Set up Portrait Sessions in Local Neighborhoods
You don’t always need an organization to help you do charity work. As a photographer, you can take the initiative and start giving back on your own accord. Set up free portrait shoots in local neighborhoods. It’s nice to go to communities that tend to be on the lower end of the socio-economic scale. You don’t even have to parade it as charity. Just let them know you want to do something kind and useful for the community. A nice photoshoot can put smiles on the face of people who struggle.
Run Free Workshops For Children
So many photographers like to run workshops. Many of them charge hundreds (sometimes thousands) of dollars to pass on their skills. Photography is a fantastic way to get children engaged in something meaningful. But education can often be expensive. Set up a short workshop and let children attend for free. Doing so may change the course of a child’s life forever.
Give Away Unused Gear
I know gear is expensive. And many of us sell our gear to help fund new photography equipment. But if you have a camera sitting on the shelf and don’t need the money, why not give it away? Many impoverished people are put off starting photography because of the high costs that come with getting started. Putting a camera in their hand for free will certainly help them.
Pro Tip: Send out posts on social media. People are generally honest and trustworthy, so they can help you find the right home for the camera you’re giving away.
Do Sponsered Photoshoots
Another cool way to use photography to do charity work is sponsored photoshoots. You’ve heard of people selling cookies, doing marathons, and going on skydives; what about sponsoring you to do photoshoots? You can raise funds for your favorite charity and create some fabulous photography!
It’s Easy to Get Started
If you find yourself saying, “I want to give back, but it’s hard to do,” let me tell you it really isn’t. All you need is a genuine ambition to give back and do some charity work. Photography is always in demand, so there’s no shortage of opportunities out there to do something good with your skill.
The above suggestions will help you get started, but the real step is you taking the leap and doing some meaningful with your talent. You won’t regret it, and you can make a real difference to individuals and communities. Thanks for reading.