A Photo Start Love Story

Photo Start is excited to announce the Maurice and Sally Goller Explorer Scholarship Fund, which aims to raise $75,000 to strengthen and sustain our work educating the travelers, storytellers, and leaders of tomorrow. The inspiration for Photo Start evolved out of this love story for the ages:

Once upon a time…

It was a typical school day in April 1943. Sally was enjoying her lunch at Brooklyn’s Lincoln High School when a teacher, thought Sally was being too loud, so she reprimanded her by “forcing” her to eat lunch at the track team table. So much for a reprimand! There, Maurice introduced himself and welcomed Sally to the seat next to his. That weekend they went on their first date: a movie and stroll on the iconic Coney Island boardwalk for Nathan’s Famous hot dogs and french fries. They’ve been inseparable ever since.

Maurice and Sally Goller began life as husband and wife on October 20, 1945, at a small ceremony in Brooklyn. With Maurice, a medic and corporal in the U.S. Army on a weekend pass from Fort Dix, the newlyweds enjoyed a short but unforgettable honeymoon at the historic Hotel Tudor (now Westgate New York Grand Central). For a young couple from Brighton Beach, staying at an elegant Manhattan hotel was a big deal – and at $6.25/night, it was a also a great deal!

That weekend was the first of many adventures in travel for the Goller family. Over the years they commemorated most of their anniversaries with a trip, eventually including their children and grandchildren. They have visited an incredible 120 countries!

Win a Weekend Getaway at Westgate NY Grand Central

The team at Westgate NY invited Maurice and Sally to be their first guests upon re-opening in July 2021. They also are honoring the original rate ($6.25 a night for three nights in 1945) for the Gollers’ 76th and all subsequent anniversaries. Plus twenty lucky travelers will also enjoy the 1945 rate for a three-night stay, and one couple will win a complementary three-night getaway with a $200 resort credit. Share your vacation photos and stories for a chance to win at Westgate NY.

Why are we sharing this story with you?

Because Maurice and Sally are the grandparents of our founders, David and Abby.

At home and on their travels with their children and grandchildren, they role-modeled the importance of family; the value of education – including travel and exploring other cultures; the power of meaningful, shared experiences; and lifting up others who are less fortunate.

It was a family trip to South Africa in 2015 that inspired Abby to join her brother, David, in founding Photo Start. Her work in education and David’s experience as a photographer led them to Photo Start’s mission: Use photography to teach students the skills to thrive in any environment.

The grand re-opening festivities at Westgate NY will include an appearance by Maurice and Sally as well as a special digital exhibit by Photo Start students. The exhibit, Explorations, is a tribute to the Goller legacy of learning through education, experiences and travel. A live exhibit is in the works to be hosted by Westgate Resorts across the United States!

Now you have an opportunity to inspire a new generation of explorers.

We are honoring and celebrating Maurice and Sally’s 75th Anniversary with a special campaign. Your contribution to the Explorer Scholarship Fund ensures students learn valuable professional and life skills while exploring and connecting with their communities. Donate by August 31, and you will receive exclusive access to our digital exhibit, Explorations, and inspirational student stories throughout the year.

$75

Maurice and Sally value a well-rounded education, which includes exploring new places and cultures. $75 gives one week of photo walks to seven students!

$150

Gives one week of new experiences and lessons plus one memory card each for a dozen students. Memory cards are important as they allow students to own and keep their work.

$225

Gives one week of learning valuable professional, social, and leadership skills for an entire class (Typical class size is 20-24 students.)

$300

Gives one student a full 24-week program and a memory card, ensuring a brighter future they can imagine, envision and create for themselves.

Together, let’s give our students a Photo Start to their happily ever after!

If you would like to donate securities, annuities, cryptocurrency or other funds please contact us at support@photostart.org

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