Guest Activities at Joy’s House – What’s New

October 23, 2018

Editor’s Note: We’re excited to announce that over the coming weeks and months, our Guests will be participating in an exciting initiative called “Gifts from the Guests”. Working with local organizations such as the Indianapolis Art Center, The glObl Culture, and Line + Form, Joy’s House Guests will be creating unique and meaningful works of art in various ways – through painting, ceramics, collaborative work, and more. These projects will be turned into gifts for friends of Joy’s House and members of our community – and what a great way for our Guests to be engaged in creating and sharing the message of Joy’s House! Below, read about a photography project that our Guests participated in this summer, and check back frequently for updates on new and upcoming Gifts from the Guests projects. In the spirit of our 2018 theme, Courage, read more about how our Guests had the Courage to share their perspectives through this activity. 


Leading up to this year’s Open House, we did something interesting.  We gave our Guests a camera and empowered them to take photos of anything that spoke to them.  The idea was then to put the pics on display at the Open House and have visitors vote on their favorites.  It was a big hit – between all the photos, there were almost 100 votes.

I coordinated this effort and quite frankly, I thought that taking a few quick photos would be an easy activity for our Guests.

I was wrong.

One Guest that I approached, who is living with a vision impairment, was apprehensive and questioned her ability.  After all, she can’t see.  Not one thing.  How could she bring any value to this project?  It took quite a bit of encouragement and coaching before she agreed to participate.  When she heard that camera snap – WOW – she lit up!

Another Guest.  He’s traveled the world, serving our country and has taken beautiful pictures along the way.  He still admires photography and knows a good landscape when he sees one.  Perfect fit, I thought.  I asked for his help.  He wasn’t interested.  It was as if he had given up on his once beloved hobby.  He also needed encouragement and coaching before he humored me.  After taking just one picture, he was back!

Another.  She’s a real people pleaser.  Always worked in customer service.  And took it seriously.  She aims to make everyone around her happy.  Her bosses, her family, her friends.  She has a great work ethic and wants to do the right thing.  The idea of taking photos of whatever she wanted seemed to make her nervous.  What if it’s not the right shot?  How would she know what photos I wanted her to take?  Same encouragement and coaching.  She embraced the freedom and didn’t stop taking pictures until I took the camera away from her!

Something that I thought would be so simple took so much courage.  Courage to trust.  Courage to believe in yourself.  Courage to let go.  Courage to share your perspective.

~Corrina T.
Project Manager