Camps Embrace New Technology and Fundraising Tool to Send Camper Photos to Families
AUSTIN, Texas – AUGUST 25, 2017– This summer, parents had a new way to keep in contact with campers at some of the Texas Hill Country’s most well-known summer camps. Waldo Photos, an Austin-based startup that uses facial recognition to find and deliver photos, successfully debuted its new technology at T Bar M Camps, Camp Balcones Springs and Still Water Camps, in addition to another pilot camp in North Carolina.
The app, which uses facial recognition to match camper faces to photos in their albums, was an an optional service for families, who simply submitted their camper’s session code and selfie to the service. As soon as photos were uploaded each day to the albums, Waldo matched the faces to the photos, then delivered them instantly to the camper’s parents via text or in-app notification.
In its first summer, Waldo delivered more than 30,000 photos to 1,500 camp families.
“We are so excited about this new service, which saved our parents so much time each night and better connected them to the camp experience,” said Alice Myer, Director of Marketing at T Bar M Camps.
The photo platform served as a new fundraising arm for camps, with 50% of each photo subscription purchase going toward camper scholarships or other designated charities. Partner camp T Bar M used Waldo to reach their $75K fundraising goal for their Bless a Coach fund, which provides an annual gift of $500 for the camp coaches' college costs.
The camp community is close at heart for Waldo Photos founder Rodney Rice. He remembers his summer camp days in the Texas Hill Country like they were just yesterday. And he also knows what it’s like to be a camp parent, with three children of his own and their 10+ years of summer camp.
“For the past 10 years, my wife Ann and I have been weeding through 300 - 500 photos per night just hoping to see a photo of them having fun and hoping we didn’t overlook them in the sea of photos,” Rice says, “I thought there had to be a better way and decided to develop Waldo to solve it.”
Prior to Waldo, Rice co-founded HomeAdvisor and was part of the founding team behind Einstein Bros Bagels. To date, Waldo has raised $5 million in seed funding led by Los Angeles-based Upfront Ventures.
For more information about Waldo, visit: https://waldo.photos/.
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