Unseen Ministries is probably my favorite nonprofit.
As a Social Work major and an activist involved in anti human trafficking efforts for the last six years, that's a pretty bold statement for me. For the last year, I've been volunteering regularly with Unseen and they've become a central part of my life. Being able to combine my mutual passions for social good and photography is so important to me and Unseen blends the two beautifully.
This is why 10% of all session and wedding packages goes to Unseen Ministries. I believe this business is an opportunity to give back and bless people. I also want to give my photography clients a way to give back and use capturing their story to be a part of a bigger story.
Photographing the staff at Unseen Ministries was not only a ton of fun, but a huge honor and privilege. My involvement with Unseen has grown from calling donors this time last year, to now photographing the staff, being assigned solo projects, and taking on the role of Social Media Intern this spring semester. So before I share their photos, give me just a few more minutes to outline just what is so great about this local media-marketing nonprofit.
Seven Reasons I Love Unseen Ministries
1. Their heart is all about fighting human trafficking + supporting orphans + ending poverty. They work with groups around the world who are rescuing and empowering women and children. Each group they work with matches up with this mission and does amazing direct service care.
2. Artful storytelling. Unseen works with amazing artists to not just make pretty pictures or websites, but to truly communicate the stories of the people impoverished and enslaved in some of the darkest places on the planet.
3. They believe light triumphs over darkness. Every. Single. Time. This year, the autumn banquets were focused around the theme "Take Heart" based off of the words of Jesus that we are to take heart because He has overcome the world. So many of the photographs that they choose to highlight are photos of joy and healing in the lives of children who have endured pain and poverty. It's optimism that is not blind or naive - but rather steady and strong.
4. The leadership has wisdom and integrity. Unseen was started by two passionate people in their twenties who wanted to use their talents to change the world. It's not all young, crazy, unorganized passion though - they run an effective international nonprofit with all the formalities that go along with that position. And they do it well, in a way that astounds me sometimes.
5. They treat their volunteers like rockstars. Really, they treat everyone like rockstars. The staff are so quick to say "thank you." They make volunteering fun. They make the smallest task important and communicate that importance well. Their supporters are sent lots of Thank You cards and invited to banquets filled with international food, live music, and good coffee.
6. The office feels like home. As a volunteer, I always feel so at home in the office and love just being there with the staff. Some of my favorite memories include discussing laser shows or the lumberjack in Rudolph licking his ice pick or all the weird videos that get shared. There is usually good music, peanut butter stuffed pretzels, and a giant poodle wandering around.
7. This all happens in Fargo. In my beautiful little city of Fargo, I have the chance to be a part of something global.
Basically an IT wizard.
Office ninja artist.
Newest addition to the family.
Making missions look good.
Bringing interning to a whole new level.
Keeping the gang sane and out of trouble.
Head honcho + knife wielder.