Arms Around The Child

In South Africa, orphaned children often live alone without adults. We want to measure what is needed for these kids to be happy and successful young adults.


With your help, we send photographer Isa Woods to South Africa to make a visual log of what is needed on a daily basis by any children raising themselves and their siblings. This could include light bulbs, non-flammable stoves, shoes, etc. Isa will spend up to four weeks investigating what the children really need so we can build an infrastructure for their ongoing support. Most importantly Isa will hear what they need beyond the tools of survival to feel hopeful and alive.


Isa returns to the USA to work with a creative agency developing a campaign centered around the images, footage and writings during her time with the children in South Africa. Using these images we ask the American public to think of these homes as their home away from home and among their family and friends they make sure the kids get what they need.

We need to raise 9.5K to get this project off the ground:

– Round-trip Airfare to South Africa: $2000
– Hotel Costs: 1000.00
– Driver and security for Isa and Camera Equipment 500.00
– Round-trip Airfare to London to edit/prepare with UK Director AATC: $1500
– Expenses Coverage in SF and SA: $2000
– Project Expenses: $1500

Total $9,500.00

(IndieGoGo will keep 4% if we meet our goal, and 9% if we don’t)

Check out the blog here

Photographer – Isa Woods

Three years ago while at the University of San Francisco studying for a Bachelor’s degree in International Studies I texted a donation that entered me into a contest for a trip to South Africa to witness how the people of South Africa were dealing with the AIDS crisis.. All I had to do was choose one word to describe what Africa meant to me and I instinctively chose the word “strength”.

100 words were chosen out of 24,000 and I was notified as one of the 100 finalists. We had to create a blog/profile about ourselves, and what Africa meant to us. Long story short, you can imagine how thrilled I was to be one of the five people chosen to win the 5-day trip to South Africa.  Especially since the trip was part of a documentary film highlighting the work of Alicia Keys and her charity Keep a Child Alive.

The trip to South Africa June 2010 was short, beautifully exhausting, and moved me more than I could have ever realized. I felt so connected to the children I met, most of them orphaned by AIDS, and left infused with a fire that could not be put out. I traveled to South Africa with then President of KCA Leigh Blake and contacted her at Arms Around The Child where she is working now, focused on the child care and child rights in India and Africa. Their mission is everything I wish for the children I will be working with, and I am so grateful they are supporting me on this project.

I feel that I can humanize the way the world views the kids I met and put a face to the statistic of those orphaned, vulnerable, abused, lonely and sad. My mission is to expose what little is available to them behind the stigma of HIV/AIDS. Losing your mother to AIDS is heartbreaking. Raising yourself and your siblings up when your community sees you as “diseased” can be insurmountable as a child. That’s why we need you, the global community, to look after these children.  Children just like us.  Equal and deserving happiness.

Thank you for your support

With your help, we will create the campaign “Your Home Away From Home.” We want the worldwide public to support Arms Around The Child in their mission to provide safe loving homes and surrounding care for children living in extreme adversity.

To do this, we need to raise funds to send Photographer Isa Woods to South Africa to photograph, film, and help us understand the full day-to-day needs and tell the true story of what its like to live in a CHILD HEADED HOUSEHOLD.

It is much easier to start a movement than we think. Stomp with your left foot and encourage your friend to do the same. The five people watching will feel their muscles twitch. It’s instinctual for us to mimic each other, respond to one another. The more we watch our neighbor’s kids, the faster a community is born. Today, there’s a greater need for a global community. Meet your home away from home.

A HUGE thank you to Astronauts Wanted for their Exclusive “HOME” Sponsorship.


Click here to donate.