Not only is Riley Jones a star student and accomplished digital photographer, she is working to earn her way to go abroad on a class educational tour.
She has turned her eye for photo-worthy subjects into a calendar that she is offering for sale to help fund the journey.
“I’ve always loved taking pictures of things like sunsets and sunrises and the beautiful nature that is all around us up here,” Jones said.
A Lake Riverside Estates resident, Jones is a 10th grader at Springs Charter School in Temecula. Every year the school invites about 15 students to take advantage of an opportunity to go abroad for a once-in-a-lifetime educational tour.
“The tour is all inclusive and they pack as much in to those 10 days as possible,” her mother Diane Jones said. “It’s not cheap. It’s a financial stretch for us for sure. Riley had to agree to work for her daily spending money.”
The sophomore added, “This trip is with EF Educational Tours. Myself and other students from our school were given the opportunity to have this experience in June of this year. We’ll be going to New Zealand and Australia. They have all kinds of educational tours for us to participate in such as visiting Hobbiton from ‘The Lord of the Rings,’ visiting and eating at an actual Maori village, and snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef.”
Jones turned her love for nature photography into a professional and impressive calendar, with sales funding her spending money for the trip.
“Her sunrise pictures are from her mornings out feeding the goats and chickens here at home. At first we were thinking of selling still shots but then decided on the calendar. She hopes that people will appreciate her willingness to work for her money. She’s also so flattered that people have responded to her photos so positively,” her mother said.
Orders for the calendars are coming in, spurred by social media posts on Lake Riverside Facebook groups. The calendars are $15 each with free local delivery or an additional $2 for shipping.
“My family feels very strongly that if you want something, you have to work for it. Starting a GoFundMe fundraiser wasn’t an option,” Jones said. “When we were thinking of ways that I could earn some money, I thought about my pictures and selling them. I thought of the calendar because everybody needs one, and I was able to share more of my pictures that way.”
The response to the calendars has been extremely promising as friends, family and even perfect strangers place orders.
“This trip is a financial stretch for my family, and this is my way of earning money to help make this trip a reality,” Jones said.
To place an order or learn more, email Riley Jones at email@example.com.
Diane Sieker can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.