Charity for Japan!!

Japan needs our help.

Like many of you, we have been glued to the news as the tragedy continues to worsen everyday. The people of Japan have suffered through the 4th largest earthquake in recorded history, and a devastating tsunami that flattened city blocks and washed away entire villages. The death toll continues to rise everyday, and over 8600 are still missing and presumed dead. Basic supplies like food and water are getting scarce, and hundreds of thousands are homeless at a time when the temperature dips below freezing at night. Meanwhile, the aftershocks continue, and there’s still the lingering threat of another large quake with a second tsunami. (The issue with the nuclear reactor, however, seems to be overblown by the U.S. news media, according to most nuclear experts.)

Though these events may be half a world away, our hearts break for the people of Japan. How can we sit still when they desperately need our help? How can we live life as normal and operate business as usual?

Here’s your chance to support the people of Japan — and receive a portrait session too (Bay Area only)!

Sessions with one of our photographers normally cost $500 to $1500+, but we’re offering a limited number of mini-portrait sessions for donations as low as $100! All proceeds will go towards Direct Relief International, which is dedicating 100% of contributions to the recovery efforts, so you can be sure that your donations will be providing the people of Japan with much needed food, water, shelter, and medical supplies.

With your help, we’re aiming to raise at least $2000. Dear friends, here is what we are offering you for your donation:

Tier 3 (value: $1725)

30-minute mini-portrait session
20 web-resolution digital negatives
10 print-resolution digital negatives AND ten 5×7 prints
custom online slideshow
Junshien | postcard collection set 1
$200 studio credit, good towards a future photoshoot with Junshien International, transferable
+ offers from local businesses

minimum suggested donation: $500

Tier 2 (value: $1280)

30-minute mini-portrait session
20 web-resolution digital negatives
10 print-resolution digital negatives OR ten 5×7 prints
Junshien | postcard collection set 1
+ offers from local businesses

minimum suggested donation: $250

Tier 1 (value: $1125)
30-minute mini-portrait session
10 web-resolution digital negatives
5 print-resolution digital negatives OR five 4×6 prints
+ offers from local businesses

minimum suggested donation: $100

These mini-portrait sessions will be in the Bay Area only. To our readers elsewhere — sorry! But you can still donate. 🙂  And til end of this month, if you book us for one of our regular wedding or portrait collections — 40% of our gigs are outside of Northern California, so travel isn’t a problem — we’ll donate a portion of the proceeds to Direct Relief.

Offers from local businesses

These local businesses have generously offered the following to all donors of this charity drive:

Free cupcake from HannaH
Come in for one of HannaH’s infamous red velvet or chocolate espresso cupcakes! This cozy little cafe is one of the highest rated in the South Bay. Great ambiance, delicious baked goods, and some of the friendliest staff you’ll find in any coffee shop. Excellent place for studying, or just hanging out with friends.
Value: $3.50

$20 professional makeup session with A-List Makeup
A-List Makeup is one of the Bay Areas top make-up and hair studios. Sessions normally cost $75-$250, but donors will receive a makeup session for only $20! Hair styling is another $20. This can be done prior to the portrait session, or be used for a night out in the city. Valid for a one-time use, either on April 3 or 16.
Value: $250

$25 credit towards any jewelry at BoLee Bridal
Shopping for a wedding or bridesmaid dress? Come in to BoLee Bridal, the hottest new bridal store in the Bay Area! They have a brand new showroom, and exclusive access to designer lines such as David Tutera. Great service, beautiful dresses, a wonderful experience. You will receive $25 credit towards any jewelry in the store.
Value: $25

Free financial consultation session w/ comprehensive analysis
Come in for a free 45-minute financial consultation session with Rex Wang from Strategic Financial Group of CA.  Junshien personally uses him for all aspects of his finances, including money management, investment strategies, insurance needs, AND retirement planning! You will also be provided a detailed, comprehensive analysis and strategies that will help you reach your financial goals! Call Rex at (408) 971-2060 x2010 to schedule your consultation.
Value: $500

A couple more freebies might possibly be added in the next few days, so you’ll be receiving even more for your donation! Details for all these offers will be included in an email we’ll be sending out.

Important details (Please read before donating!)

Date and time
Portrait sessions will take place on April 3 and 16. If demand is overwhelming, a 3rd date will be opened up. You will be contacted within a week to select your portrait session time slot. A limited number of time slots are available for each date, and will be granted on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Two locations will be selected — one for April 3rd, and one for April 16th. Details will be announced later, but at least one of the session dates will be at either the Japanese Tea Garden in San Francisco, or Hakone Garden in Saratoga.

Type of portrait session
It can be a mini-engagement session, or a simple family session for Mother’s Day, or senior portraits, or even just a fun shoot for yourself! How about some simple headshots for your business? Or if you’re in need of new profile pics for Facebook, or something more flattering for your OkCupid/ account — we’ll do that too, and we’ll make you look fabulous!

1 outfit, no wardrobe changes. You can show up in a kimono, or a spring dress, or a tux, or whatever you want, because you’re just stylin’ like that.

Only Paypal transaction fees (2.9%) and print costs (minimal) will be taken out of the total amount. 100% of proceeds will be sent to Direct Relief International. Documentation of the group donation will be provided.

Why Direct Relief International?
Many non-profits spend a considerable amount of their donations on administrative fees, advertising, and executive salaries and benefits. Direct Relief, however, has been consistently rated as one of the most efficient (98.8% goes to program expenses), effective (they focus on addressing the region’s greatest needs), and transparent (their website is very clear about how the money is spent). In fact, Direct Relief is the top rated relief organization currently in Japan. For this fund, 100% of contributions will go towards relief and recovery efforts in Japan.

For more information, check out the report by Charity Navigator. Our friends over at Philanthro have also written a good summary about why Direct Relief is the organization of choice.

If you have any questions about this charity drive, please ask them in the comments section down below.

How to donate

There are a very limited number of spots available, and several people have already signed up in the past few hours (yes, even before this blog post went public). When you donate, please click on “Type of portrait session” on the second page, and enter your portrait session info. (Type of session = e-session, family pictures, individual portraits, etc.)


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