Front porch photo sessions will benefit the Park City Community Foundation Response Fund
Parkites can raise money for the Park City Community Foundation’s Community Response fund just by sitting on their porches.
Jill Warburton, owner of Warburton Photography, has started the Park City Front Porch Project, where she will take professional portraits of individuals and families at the front of their homes for a minimum donation of $75.
The money will be added to the Park City Community Foundation’s Community Response Fund, which has been deployed to help local residents who are experiencing financial distress from lost hours and jobs due to the COVID-19 quarantine.
The 15-minute photo sessions will take place between noon and 3 p.m. on May 14, 19 and 21, with additional dates added as needed, Warburton said.
Once the donation is made, a tax receipt will be emailed to the donor, said Park City Front Porch Project philanthropy coordinator Tara Joiner.
All sessions will be contactless and follow the Summit County Health Department’s COVID-19 guidelines, she said.
“We will be socially distanced, and Jill will use a zoom lens,” Joiner said. “The family will receive one edited portrait and all proofs that were taken during that session.”
The Park City Porch Project is part of a national initiative that has popped up on communities around the country, Warburton reached out to a photographer who started her own Porch Project on Block Island, Rhode Island.
“She told me that a ton of people were struggling on Block Island, and she was also having a little bit of anxiety,” Warburton said. “She told me she wanted to help out in this time of need.”
Warburton decided to start the Park City Porch Project after talking with Joiner, who sits with her on the Ecker Hill Middle School PTO fundraising board.
“Tara and I talked about the students’ families who were struggling with rent and toiletries because of COVID, and we reached out to the Park City Community Foundation.”
The two got in touch with the foundation’s philanthropy manager, Sam Mueller, who set up a donation page on the Park City Community Foundation’s website.
“We had already put together a community response fund a few years ago that brought together philanthropy, government and businesses partners to pull resources in hopes we wouldn’t have to use it,” Mueller said. “We just wanted to be prepared for some disaster if it happened down the road. Living in the mountains it could have been fire, earthquakes or a lot of other things, but it ended up being COVID.”
The foundation, which had raised more than $1 million in less than one month, deployed the fund quickly as the community shut down in March and April, Mueller said.
“Our focus was and still is to make sure local families’ basic needs, including food, housing and healthcare, are being met,” she said. “It also helps with other essentials — diapers, baby formula and shampoo and hand soap — that are needed.”
To help the funds go further, Park City Rotary Club announced a $43,000 matching grant with the community response fund, Mueller said.
“They will match any donation that comes in,” she said.
Warburton is grateful that her talents can help the town she lives in and loves.
“I think the world needs more compassion right now, and I’m lucky to have a gift of doing photography,” she said. “I figured if I can donate my time and raise a bunch of money to the Park City Community Foundation, it feels good to give back to Park City in this time of crisis.”
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