Nature snaps bring the Hertfordshire Community Foundation into frame
An online photography exhibition is helping Hertfordshire's grassroot charities develop.
Herts in Focus opened in late September and is showcasing the work of 11 wildlife photographers. Their prints are being sold to raise funds for the Hertfordshire Community Foundation (HCF), an independent charity.
The HCF provides grants to families in crisis, grassroots charities and voluntary groups. It aims to help some of the county’s most vulnerable residents and tackle deprivation.
The photographs are being gradually released to the public over 30 days. On each day since the exhibition began on Tuesday, September 22, two new snaps are being published on Herts in Focus’ social media pages, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, along with a short story about each picture.
Any viewers who fall in love with a particular image are able to buy an A4 print mounted in an A3 frame on Herts in Focus' website for a donation of £60. These will be available for sale until the end of the year and all the proceeds will go to HCF.
Henrietta Buxton, who coordinated the exhibition said, "Photography is my passion, it captures moments in time, inspires me and through it I meet lots of interesting new people – including my fellow photographers who have generously contributed to this exhibition to make it possible.
"I wanted to help my local community and thought that an exhibition would be a wonderful way to bring people together and at the same time introduce them to our local community foundation, which provides vital support to Hertfordshire’s charitable sector.
"Although the exhibition can’t go ahead as originally planned, we felt that we may be able to achieve even more if we held an online exhibition, reaching more people and hopefully raising even more money for this worthy cause. We hope that people will enjoy the photos and are inspired help us to help those in need in our local communities."
Over 30 years, HCF has funded thousands of county-wide initiatives addressing a range of social issues including domestic abuse, learning disabilities, bereavement, homelessness, mental health and much more.
The grants have enabled music therapy groups to help people affected by dementia, paid for support courses for carers of young people affected by ADHD and Autism and increased capacity for a domestic abuse support services, to name but a few of the many good deeds.
As lockdown was implemented, HCF provided grants to enable local charities to adapt. Grants included money to Citizens Advice - which helped it to provide vital guidance remotely. It funded telephone counselling and conflict coaching for vulnerable families, including those experiencing domestic violence.
Grants were also awarded to help volunteers support isolated and elderly by providing free transport for hospital visits and delivery of prescriptions and food.
Helen Gray, foundation director for HCF said: "We would like to extend our sincere thanks to the photographers who have so generously provided these stunning photos, and for everyone who has expressed an interest in purchasing prints.
"The collection is truly inspiring and showcases some of the most beautiful wildlife of our county. Sadly, everyone’s experience of life in Hertfordshire isn’t always beautiful or easy and people are struggling through serious social issues in every part of our county.
"Monies raised through the sale of prints will help HCF to make Hertfordshire a better place for everyone."