Help Portrait Ridge Meadows takes place Dec. 1 at Golden Ears United Church in Maple Ridge. (Contributed)

Family portraits for those in need in Maple Ridge

Help Portrait takes place Dec. 1

Photographers, makeup artists, hair stylists and an array of other volunteers are getting ready for the 8th annual Help Portrait event in Maple Ridge.

Help Portrait is an occasion where photographers, editors, hair stylists and makeup artists come together for an afternoon of free portrait sessions for those who may not otherwise be able to afford to have a professional photograph taken.

“People who can afford it may take for granted that they have records of their family to look back on,” said organizer Brenda Garcia.

“But there are families that don’t have that opportunity,” she added.

Every family leaves with a free eight-by-10-inch framed portrait.

“We would like to see more visitors come this year because we have enough volunteers to serve more people,” said Garcia, who is hoping to see more than 300 visitors.

Last year, there were about 270 people who attended the event.

This year, there will be four photo booths, a hair and makeup station, a children’s activity station, and festive music.

Editors and hair and makeup artists are still needed for the event.

For children, there will be entertainment stations that will feature games, reading, colouring and crafts.

Light snacks will also be provided by the Salvation Army Ridge Meadows Ministries.

Every participant will receive a mini-makeover, including makeup and a hairstyle before they go before the photographer.

There is no pre-registration or qualifications to be able to have a portrait taken.

Help Portrait is a global event that takes place in 67 countries and 3,049 locations around the world on the same day.

Globally, 381,856 portraits have been created collectively by 75,442 volunteers.

The event was founded in 2009 by American photographer Jeremy Cowart.

To date, Help Portrait Ridge Meadows has served more than 1,200 people since it started in 2011.

Monetary donations are being accepted to help pay for printers, ink, frames, hair and makeup supplies and the materials for children’s crafts, as well as donations of new, unused hair and makeup products and donations of food as well for the participants and the volunteers.

Help Portrait takes place from 1-8 p.m. on Dec. 1 at Golden Ears United Church, 22165 Dewdney Trunk Rd. in Maple Ridge.

• For more information or to donate, go to helpportraitridgemeadows.com or email smile@helpportraitridgemeadows.com.

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