|Published:||Sep 21, 2012 10:42 PM EDT|
|Updated:||Feb 06, 2013 5:37 PM EST|
FORT MYERS, Fla. - We take pictures all the time with our digital cameras or our cell phones. But a group of children in Fort Myers learned the true value of a photograph. They were given the chance to capture their hopes and dreams on film. Cameras provided a few moments of bliss for children who've endured too many less-than-blissful times.
About fifteen children, some who live at the Salvation Army's Red Shield Lodge, scribbled down their hopes and dreams. They aren't wishing for iPods or expensive toys. Their dreams are much simpler, but incredibly powerful. One wished he could go home, another hoped for a job someday.
"I want to help New York City and Fort Myers," eight-year-old Jordan Bice said.
"My dream is to have a new life," eight-year-old Lorenzo Burge said.
They're taking part in "Pictures of Hope." Fort Myers is one of twelve cities in the country chosen to be part of the program. Victory Layne Chevrolet provided cameras, and photojournalist Linda Solomon showed them how to capture their dreams. Solomon has had a star-studded career. She's photographed everyone from Elizabeth Taylor to Justin Beiber, and has covered the Oscars for 30 years.
"This is the best part of my career," Solomon said. "One child said to me, this camera has my dreams. So you see, they take this photo assignment very seriously. We show the children their hopes and dreams are respected."
After a mini-photography course, cameras began to flash. Chauncey snapped his wish for a new friend. An American flag showed Aaron's hope that all soldiers come home. And, a basketball hoop represented his his dream to play in the NBA.
Once developed, the pictures will transform dreams into something these children can hold onto forever.
"It's a wonderful way for them to express something that's beyond their self and the hopes they have here today are really gifts to us all," Maj. Tom Louden, Incident Commander for the Salvation Army said.
Photos taken by the kids today will become holiday greeting cards. 100% of the proceeds will benefit the Salvation Army's Red Shield Lodge.
The children at the Salvation Army's Red Shield Lodge will see their "Pictures of Hope" cars for the first time at a celebration and Meet the Young Artist Reception at Victory Layne Chevrolet in November.
Pictures of Hope cards are available now from Russell Rieder, Director of Resource Development with the Salvation Army of Lee, Hendry and Glades Counties. You can contact him at 239-278-1551 or email@example.com.
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