Josephine Herrick Project
Formerly RTP (Rehabilitation Through Photography)

The Josephine Herrick Project is a nonprofit that enlists photographic community volunteers to educate students who have not had the opportunity to learn the communicative power of photography. Through partnerships with local organizations, JHProject’s completely free programs inspire children, teens, adults and seniors with the visual language of photography, enhancing their abilities to transform communities through artistic vision.

JHP Celebrates Children on International Children’s Book Day!

Children’s Books have a very special meaning to us at the Josephine Herrick Project. 

Today is International Children’s Book Day (ICBD) a yearly event sponsored by the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), an international non-profit organization. Founded in 1967, the day is observed on or around Hans Christian Andersen‘s birthday, which is today, April 2. Activities include writing competitions, announcements of book awards and events with authors of children’s literature.

JHP uses the “Power of Photography” to guide children throughout our programs.  In 2014, we offered programs for children on the autism spectrum at the Brooks Institute, Cooke Center Academy, Birch Family Services and Stratford Public Library. Our programs stress “visual literacy” and the camera becomes a means of expression for the students.

After each program concludes, JHP works alongside the teachers and professional volunteer photographers to create a Blurb photo book that includes the students’ photos, information about the program, messages from the participants and of course the smiling faces captured as they share their joy of photography.  Check out all of our books on Blurb.  Your support helps us create more programs for children and other underserved populations.

 

On a historic note, one of our long supporting volunteers, Jean Lewis, was also a children’s book author.  She got her start through Little Golden Books and began by writing adventure books for “The Flintstones” and “Bugs Bunny.” Her body of work consists of over 100 books.  But most importantly, she gave freely of her time for over 55 years. She began work at VSP (Volunteer Service Photographers) now known as JHP (Josephine Herrick Project) in 1954 and remained for 55 years including her over 20 years as Executive Director.

Check out feature on Jean Lewis. 

— Jackie Augustine

JHP Goes Blue for Autism Awareness

Josephine Herrick Supports the Light It Up Blue campaign bringing awareness to people on the autism spectrum.

Every April 2nd, Autism Speaks celebrates World Autism Awareness Day with a global autism awareness campaign called Light It Up Blue. It’s easy (and fun!) to be an advocate — you can do anything from wearing blue to lighting your whole office or school up blue. To Learn more visit www.autismspeaks.org and don’t forget to add #LIUB to any photos you post on your social media!

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and autism are both general terms for a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors. An estimated 1 out of 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls are diagnosed with autism in the United States.

Josephine Herrick Project teaches photography to participants on the spectrum from kindergarten through college. Recently, our photographers attended a professional development workshop on working with People on the spectrum hosted by our community partner, Ryan Wecker, an expert from the OASIS program at Pace University. The OASIS Program provides support for college students on the spectrum who are able to take regular college courses yet may have difficulty with the social interactions that accompany attending a university. JHP photographers worked with OASIS students last summer and are gearing up for another summer program in 2015.

Here are some snapshots from last summer’s program:

– Elana Hart, Development Director

Program Spotlight: Goodwill Beacon Student Photographers Prepare for College Tour

Goodwill Industries and Josephine Herrick Project recently collaborated to bring a 4-week after school photography program to high school students as they prepare to embark on their annual college tour. Learning to utilize the camera as a tool for documenting and telling a story, the students will serve as the official college tour photographers this year. Supported by the expertise of JHP volunteer photographers, Romina Hendlin and David Mark Erickson, the students focused on composition, finding patterns and point of view. The goal of this program is to guide students in navigating new spaces by using the viewfinder to zoom in on their interests as they relate to choosing a college to attend.

Last week, I led the group in a mock college tour around the Goodwill campus where we staged introductions to “college staff” and practiced the techniques of capturing stories of their individual and collective experiences with photos. As we walked the halls, I acted as a student tour guide asking and answering questions while the photography instructors quizzed them on their knowledge of the camera. To watch these students excitedly engage with the camera was incredible and gave me great confidence that they will return to Astoria with dazzling photos.


This pilot program is the first of what we hope to be many programs in collaboration with Goodwill’s Beacon program.

– A. Williams