About a year ago I reached out to a few friends that had just begun the adoption process. I had this idea to accompany them as they picked up their kids and document the story. My vision was to bless them as a family with the images and also to use the imagery to somehow educate people about adoption. That same evening my pal Kim tagged me in a post on The Archibald Project's Instagram account. I immediately started following them and then went on the website and spent hours reading the blog, watching videos, and crying my eyes out. Their vision and mission were right in line with what my own heart was desiring!
When I saw the announcement for the media missions trips about 6 months ago I was stoked about applying, but decided it was not the right time, so I brushed off the idea. A few days before Christmas, Whitney (the founder of The Archibald Project along with her husband Nick) posted that they were still looking for photographers to join them on the media mission trips in Uganda. Again, I brushed it off. But when my friend Amber tagged me in the post and it showed up in my feed once more I sensed God probably wanted me to look into it again. The only dates that worked with my schedule were in the beginning of February and that felt way to soon in my opinion. But God has a way of nudging, so I applied. On New Year's Eve I was invited to join the team and knew I had to say yes.
So, at the end of this month I am headed to Africa with my trusty camera and a willing heart. I will meet up with a team of other talented photographers and our time will be spent loving on and serving orphans and documenting their stories. We aim to raise awareness about the orphan crisis, fight for the fatherless, and inspire people to action through our imagery.
Currently, there are an estimated 147 million orphans in the world. If we tell their stories, fewer will be called orphans. Check out The Archibald Project website to see some incredible stories and learn more.
I am eager to use my camera as a tool for change and give my talent for a bigger purpose. Please head to my Facebook page and The Archibald Project’s too and click that “like” button to see updates from our trip and faces of the kids we will meet. Be sure to follow along on Instagram as well @jackipotorke and @thearchibaldproject. Re-share what we post with your community via social media, email, etc. We need anyone and everyone to see these posts as we believe they will be used to encourage people to adopt, foster, or get involved in orphan care.
Thank you for your participation. I look forward to sharing many stories and images with you soon!
All images below are by The Archibald Project from a previous media mission trip.