By Emily Metheny
In case you haven’t seen any of his very sharable photos and stories, photographer Brandon Stanton snaps portraits of strangers in New York City and asks them questions that can be as simple as “how the day’s going?” to “who inspires you the most?” The latter question is what launched HONY’s recent newsworthiness.
On Jan. 19, Stanton took Vidal Chastanet’s photo in Brooklyn and asked him who influenced him the most. Ms. Lopez, the principal from Mott Bridges Academy, was the scholar’s answer (the academy refers to its students as “scholars”). From there, the story spread on social media like wildfire until Stanton ended up doing a photo series with the teachers and students of the school, including Ms. Lopez.
Because the HONY community wanted to rally around the school, Stanton and Lopez started an Indiegogo campaign to create a fund to take sixth graders on a visit to Harvard every year. The original goal was $700,000, but followers of HONY responded by raising $1.25 million during the entire campaign. Every dollar earned after $700,000 goes towards a scholarship fund for the scholars.
To see all of the photos from that series and read more about the impact that one young man made on his community, check out Stanton’s blog on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Tumblr. You won’t regret liking and following.