PRATT — Around the world, and in Pratt, there has been an emphasis on community and helping others during these coronavirus times.
Several organizations and individuals joined forces recently to make needed donations to the Pratt Hope Center by way of a “Front Step Fundraiser.”
Kayla and Mariah Archer, of Archer Photography, helped organize the event which revolved around families posing for pictures in everyday clothes, or whatever they wanted, on their front porches. Archer Photography then took portraits from a safe distance.
The fundraiser, hosted on April 18 from noon to 6 p.m., collected hygiene products, diapers, wipes, toiletries and canned foods as the price for the portraits; along with $40 in Dillon’s gift cards and $578.25 in cash donations.
“Everyone did their part,” said Kayla Archer. “The 25 cents part of the total donation was actually from a little girl who donated. I believe anybody can still donate to the Hope Center, anything helps.”
The idea to host the fundraiser came when Archer saw a woman asking for help getting feminine hygiene products on a community help Facebook page.
“That’s something we just don’t think about during times of crisis,” she said. “These things are important, as well as diapers, toiletries. What’s easy for some people to get is not always easy for someone else.”
Archer said the idea for the project was inspired by a similar event publicized recently on the news.
For Archer and friends, the goal was to get as many feminine products and toiletries as possible, as well as donations, to help as many people as possible. They hoped to gather at least 15 items, but ended up with more than 86 items.
A local Facebook group “Pratt Neighbors Helping Neighbors,” became the promotional base for the whole project. Time slots were arranged to pick up the donations and photograph the families on that site.
Pam Ford, director of the Hope Center, said the images created by the fundraiser were as important as the donations themselves.
“These photos are raw, real, and exactly what we will be looking back at in history of what it was like during COVID-19 in Pratt,” she said. “They show how we stood strong as humans, a community and a country! We did not let this virus take away our happiness, and it shows!”
The Front Step Fundraiser may make a comeback with round two in the future. However, it is always possible to donate to Pratt Hope Center regardless of scheduled promotional dates.