FROM SOCIAL MEDIA TO SOCIAL IMPACT
Jenni Vorderman is an acclaimed photographer who was awarded by Kenneth Cole Productions as the #ShareGood winner for her work with The Mighty Acorn Foundation, an organization that rescues children living in unimaginable conditions across the globe.
“For the last two years I have been working closely with The Mighty Acorn Foundation. The Foundation was started in 2013 by friends, David and Denise DeMarchis, and I have been blessed to join them on their journey.” Jenni tells Kenneth Cole Productions. “While the Foundation is not specifically focused on any one geographic area, their first major project was centered on the Kipsongo Slums of Kitale, Kenya. The slum is home to more than thirteen thousand people occupying only 6.5 acres of land, and located on top of an old dumpsite. It is a place referred to by the locals as ‘Place of the Dogs’ or ‘Place of Hopelessness’. Many of the children who live in the Slum are fending for themselves, just as many are orphaned, and many more are at risk for drug and sex trafficking.”
“Through my photography, I have been able to help tell the stories of the people that I have met in Kitale, and also help bring awareness to their plight. One of the more important projects that I’ve worked on with this Foundation was interviewing and photographing over eighty girls living within the Slum, with the hope of finding sponsors for them in the states. These sponsorships are not just about writing a check to cover everyday needs, but rather, to connect hearts and nurture long term relationships. For me there is no greater reward than to bare witness to that kind of ‘coming together’. The work I am able to do in Kitale, is work that I always dreamed of doing. To be working so closely with a Foundation that places value on developing long lasting relationships with those they are working alongside, has been the greatest blessing.”
“I am currently working with The Mighty Acorn Foundation to network teenagers with area mentors, and to place them in internships as they phase into adulthood. Although the act of ‘giving back’ is different for everyone, I believe that if we are able to tap into our own calling and connect with something greater than ourselves, then the world would be a much better place. Start by finding an organization that speaks to you, place a call to see how you might help, or step out on your own and do something that inspires you. The greatest thing you can do is take the first step.”