Doing The Help Portrait In Diepsloot Part 3 – Giving Back

In April 2012, a couple of my friends had the idea to give 1,600 Help Portrait photos to the people in Diepsloot, a large squatter settlement in Johannesburg.

We had struggled with resources. But in end April, the readers of this blog contributed funds to support us on this mission. And a bunch of volunteers came forward in June to help us do the near impossible feat of taking photographs for hundreds and hundreds of children.

In July, we printed and mounted these photos on cardboard. And now in August, we’ve finally kept our word to the children and returned to Diepsloot to give their portraits back to them.

And THIS was the moment we had all worked so hard for –

It was a day of happiness.

I haven’t had a good week and was a bundle of gloom and moodiness, but seeing the children made my heart skip a little. Their shy waves, sweet thumb bumps, hugs and quiet appreciation of their own gorgeous faces. It was a heart warming sight.

And that was me, scaling heights to capture these moments. Haha..

 Photo credit: Sine Thieme

It was lovely seeing the kids so thrilled with their own portraits. They looked proud and strong. May these photos serve to remind them of the handsome, strong and wonderful people they are. And may they inspire all of them to stay clean and healthy and have hope and faith for the good days that are to come.

Once again, big thanks to all readers who had contributed financially to make this exercise possible. We shot for approximately another 80 kids on the day we gave back and we will continue to shoot more for Help Portrait in other locations until the funds are exhausted. Big thanks too to the volunteers who made this possible.

Help Portrait is a wonderful experience. If you are keen to volunteer – as a photographer, usher, coordinator, fund raiser or just being around to give smiles and cheers, please sign up through the various channels below.

What is Help Portrait?

Watch this video. It says everything about what it is.

Help Portrait will be held on 8 December 2012 across the world.

In South Africa, Help Portrait will be kicked off with a series of workshops on portrait shooting in August 2012. You can register as a volunteer right away at Ubuntu Help Portrait.

In Singapore, you can register as a volunteer with Help Portrait Singapore.

All my blog posts on my involvement in Help Portrait are archived here.




  1. Fantastic, Karen! What a great initiative. Congrats to all involved. Proud to have contributed from up here in the far north :)

  2. Absolutely awesome and 100% inspiration!

    Thank you Mrs, to you and the Team, for being so bold and for leading where we hope many others will follow!



  1. » Goodbye Karen, Hello Bing / - [...] in 2012 through her blog, Story of Bing, and a major free portraits event where close to 1,500 portraits…

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