February 01, 2010 — Photolanthropy
(noun. the desire to promote the welfare of others through photography)
Charity: Brides for the Cure (Benefiting Susan G Komen for the Cure): www.bridesforthecure.net
Photographer: Dale Benfield (www.benfieldphotography.net)
How did you get involved?
I co-founded this charity with two other local wedding vendors in 2007. In a dominantly female-based market, there is a constant reminder of the extreme effects of breast cancer. We encourage our brides to volunteer and donate to the cause by offering them discounts on our services and fun prizes, such as free photography.
How can other photographers get involved in your charity?
We encourage other photographers, locally and nationally, to start their own team of brides to raise money for their local affiliate of Susan G. Komen. Raising money for breast health is not only a great cause, it's also a way to connect with your brides and show them you care about their future and their community which, in turn, creates lasting client relationships.
What has this project given back to you?
My mother-in-law is a breast cancer survivor. Seeing my 5-year-old daughter, who loves her grandmother fiercely, learn too young about the dangers of breast cancer and the side-effects of chemotherapy is a sobering situation. My hopes, my prayers and my earnest fight for the cure all stem from my desire to protect her future, so she can live in a world where breast cancer does not exist.
Additionally, I was deeply touched by a letter I received from a mother of one of my brides following our first event. She is a breast cancer survivor and thanked me for the work I had done. It was a very emotional moment for me as I read through her story and saw firsthand the struggles one faces while enduring breast cancer. It was, and still is, a main motivating factor for continuing this project.