We’re in what’s known locally as “off-season.” Typically, that means things slow down a bit before the swirl of wedding season begins, before the arrival of all the fun families who visit our beautiful 30a beach community each year. We thought about taking a break before our packed spring calendar takes over, and then we got it – The Email.

That email brought an incredible opportunity to be part of something huge so we wasted no time in jumping on it. The great part is that it includes everything we love – cameras, travel, kids, adventure, and smiling (because smiling is our favorite!). But the best part? It’s something near and dear to our hearts that we can share with YOU, and we love finding ways to include you in our #pure7fam, whether you’re a local or a seasonal friend. Ready?

A few years ago, we hosted fundraising portrait sessions to help pay for cleft lip and cleft palet surgeries for kids whose families can’t afford them. You may not know that these deformities, ones that are fixed almost without thought in the United States, are literally life-threatening in other countries simply for lack of resources. This year, we are thrilled to get to physically visit a clinic and document these life-changing surgeries in person.


In about two weeks, our associate photographer Lindsey Bray will be packing her gear and heading to Cavite, Philippines! She’ll spend 10 days shadowing a medical mission team and shooting the incredible work done by Operation Smile. She’ll be blogging her trip, which we’ll share in a special series of posts, and her work will be published as part of a compilation celebrating both Operation Smile’s 35th anniversary and PPA Charities‘ 20th anniversary. 

A seasoned traveler to third-world countries (see some of her photos from past trips at the end of this post), Lindsey was the obvious choice from the Pure7 team to document this trip. Her past vists to orphanages in Haiti and India highlighted for us the urgent needs in those cultures for medical treatments that are readily available here. Going on this trip with the purpose of telling the stories of these children through photos is a huge privilege. It allows us to be part of bringing the experience to people who don’t have the option to see it firsthand.

Since this is a charitable trip, we are responsible for raising all funds for trip expenses. While some of us can’t physically go on a trip like this for any number of reasons, we can help send the ones who are able to pack a bag and hit the road. Won’t you join us?

Here’s what to know about your donations:

• $240 pays for a whole surgery for one child. A whole surgery! Your money goes directly to ensure that a baby gets enough nutrition to survive, and a 7-year-old gets to go to school instead of being shunned for being deformed. For any of you who were made fun of as a kid, or whose child has been laughed at, you know how painful that is. Imagine having that issue fixed so that you don’t have to endure the teasing. Imagine being the mom or dad of a child who gets the surgery. Can you even imagine the relief you’d feel? Donating to this trip is a small way to make that happen for someone else.

• Any amount helps. $20 donations add up quickly, and no amount is insignificant.

• Funds raised will cover all trip-related expenses. This includes trip-specific equipment costs and daily meals not provided by the mission.

• The work of all photographers working with Operation Smile this year will be part of a special publication to be released at the end of this year (please note that the photographers receive no compensation for this project in any way). It will celebrate Operation Smile’s 35th anniversary and PPA Charities 20th anniversary, and all proceeds from the book will allow the work of those charities to continue. Donors who contribute the cost of one (1) whole surgery will receive a complimentary copy of this finished project, courtesy of Pure7 Studios.

We are honored to be part of helping build this legacy. Click here to join us!

Much love,

The Pure7 Fam


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