We’re not bragging when we say that Outreach has a pretty slick-looking public image— it’s objectively true. This is not the result of a staff of graphic designers and ambitious interns pulling all-nighters, it’s thanks to the tireless efforts and bottomless talents of Heather, Outreach’s Visual Communications Manager. A recent text from the field about the impact of her work there moved her to share this reflection, and we were, in turn, moved to share it with you. Thanks for all you do, Heather. We’re so lucky to have you.

“Are you ready for a morning smile?” Outreach’s Field Operations Manager Cassidy texted me early Saturday from Zambia, where she’s currently working. Her text was followed by a picture of the boy from the inside front cover of Outreach’s 2016 summer magazine, holding a copy of the magazine and sporting a huge grin. Cassidy managed to find him during her return to Zambia, and showed him that he was our bright-eyed superstar. She also found the beautiful children who graced the front cover of our 2015 Annual Report, and sent me another photo of them (below), holding their own copies. “They’re all very proud,” Cassidy said in another text.


This is my second year as the Visual Communications Manager at Outreach. The images I received from Cassidy this weekend were the most rewarding, humbling moments of my 23-year career as an artist. It was a very good day, and I MIGHT have spent some time happy-crying as a result.

Art has always been what I do best. I am passionate about design and art direction, and I’m extremely lucky that I’ve been able spend every day of my career supporting my family by doing work that I love. Now, with my job here at Outreach, my daily efforts also help enrich and empower the lives of people in poverty all over the world. I’m thrilled that I’m designing pieces that matter; pieces that can actually affect lives. It motivates me to be smarter, to think of new solutions, and to do better — every day.

Ask any artist: the hardest part isn’t refining skills over years of work, it’s finding the inspiration each day to fuel the next piece. Here at Outreach, inspiration is abundant; I need only to hear stories of lives forever improved through community efforts, to look in the eyes of those captured in photos from the field, and to consider the continuum that bring our lives together.