We got hitched in Mexico in January of 2010. (And later un-hitched in 2013, but that’s beside the point!) It was an intimate wedding with our closest family and friends. And we felt extremely lucky. But we were also very aware of the world around us where its not all letterpress and champagne toasts. Our wedding overwhelmed us in an amazing way, having our closest world with us to celebrate. And it also proved to us that with support, we could do anything.
We chose our anything to start in Nepal.
We signed up to volunteer with IVHQ (International Volunteer Headquarters). They are based in New Zealand and orchestrated our Nepal stay. They in turn put us in touch with Himsikhara Socio-Cultural Society (Hope and Home), a peace house in Kathmandu that places many volunteers throughout Nepal. As we boarded a plane from New Delhi to Kathmandu, we knew this felt right.
The only issue I had with going, was knowing I would also eventually be leaving. – Jami Saunders
While at the orphanage we knew we were not going to change the world in 2 weeks. We knew that while we felt good about our trip, this was hardly a drop in the bucket. Always photographing while we were there, near the end of the trip, we decided that upon returning to the US, we would have a photography show and raise money for the children. It was only upon coming home, that we realized, with the children on the other side of the world, and no way to reach them by mail, email, or phone, that we had to show them in a big way, that we were serious about our concern for them.
We hope that Kids of Kathmandu grows, throughout Kathmandu, throughout Nepal, and throughout other orphanages in the world. But right now, Kids of Kathmandu is a letter to the 41 children at NYCDS (New Youth Children’s Development Society). They were put in this orphanage by no fault of their own, and they deserve a chance. They need the knowledge and the support to know that repeating this cycle does not have to be their destiny. Kids of Kathmandu is a letter telling them that they have not been forgotten, that there is hope, there is a future, and together we can make anything happen.