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Kids With Cancer Learn to Develop Their Creative Voice Using Photography

By Hanssie on December 30th 2013

In 2011, the Pablove Foundation teamed up with Children’s Hospital Los Angeles to provide an 8 week program to help their pediatric cancer patients “develop their creative voice through the art of photography.” They have since expanded to New York and this year, throughout the United States.


At the start of the Pablove Shutterbugs program, students ages 6-18, receive a set of photography equipment, which they get to keep at the end of the program, and throughout the 8 weeks, the children work one on one with a photography mentor at their home and also with a group of other young patients at a photography studio. They also go on a group field trip and once a year, the artists’ work is showcased in an art gallery to celebrate their photographic achievements and raise awareness for childhood cancer.


Briana, an adorable Shutterbug student, says “A lot of these kids are going through treatment, and so am I. So, they’re both the same and you feel that, this is the right class.”


[REWIND: Photographer Documents Wife’s Battle With Cancer]

The Pablove Shutterbugs is an extension of the Pablove Foundation, an organization dedicated “to fund pediatric cancer research and advances in treatment, educate and empower cancer families, and improve the quality of life for children living with cancer through hospital play, music and arts programs.” The foundation was started in 2010 in little 6 year old Pablo Thrailkill Castelaz, lost his yearlong battle with bilateral Wilms Tumor. His mother, Executive Director, Jo Ann Thrailkill, and Catherine Berclaz began the foundation in his memory and to spread the simple, heartbreaking message, “Kids get cancer too.”

The Pablove Shutterbugs are currently looking for photography mentors for their next 8 week program in Los Angeles. You can get details about how to apply as well as more details on how to volunteer, donate or become a student, on their website.

[Photos Courtesy of: Pablove Shutterbugs Youtube]


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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

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