Q&As relating to your RIP submissions!

I'm finished with my restoration. How do I go about returning it?

  • Yay, you! First make abbbbbbsolutely sure you've thoroughly read our restoration toolbox page, and have not committed any of the taboo techniques we've asked all to avoid. Those who do not heed our guidelines slow down our entire response queue, as having to reiterate what we've painstakingly explained on our website makes letter crafting a much longer process. Learning to police your own work will benefit you, CARE and our families!
  • Secondly, review STEP #7 on our photo adoptions page that you were asked (ahem) to read before beginning your restoration. Make sure you've followed all of our specifications, including ye all important addition of naming extensions, as outlined in STEP #6. We've included info on how to upload to Google Drive, plus have listed a variety of alternate suggestions if Google Drive does not work for you.

I'm worried I'm going to miss my 3-month deadline. I need more time!

Let us know via e-mail. This way we can keep the photo's family updated. No problemo!

I cannot keep the commitment I made to restore my adopted photo. What do I do?

What you shouldn't do: disappear without word in presuming that someone else will step up and take over. Abandoned photos are rarely if ever re-adopted. Let us know via e-mail. We promise not to bite! Life happens. Common courtesy ain't so common any more. Awesome manners rock!

My adoption is too difficult or I never started for whatever reason. I'm embarrassed, so I'm going to abandon my image and pretend I never offered to volunteer for CARE. I will not let CARE know about this decision and may even ignore CARE e-mails. I'm just one person. My participation isn't crucial. Right?

We become extraordinarily blue when volunteers abandon images and are unresponsive to update inquiries. A shocking 20% have gone AWOL, leaving images gathering dust for 6-15 months. Letting us know you're unable to complete your restoration at all or in the allotted amount of time is looooads better than pulling a Houdini.

We realize that cleaning hurricane-battered images isn't as easy as it may look, and that our images pose special challenges. But don't forget that families closely watch our adoption albums, and have been instructed to count 3 months forward from a given date. Please also remember that you offered to volunteer to help Sandy families. Not make them sad. Additionally, abandoned images damage CARE's reputation. 

Also realize that every adoption, whether completed or not, eats up 30-45-minutes of archival and adminstrative time. 15 to process, 15 to reinsert, 15 writing to families and volunteers etc. Accumulatively this adds up in major ways. Over 300 photos have been abandoned, amounting to more than 200 wasted hours...for nothing.

→ Food for thought: Would you abandon a paying client's project without word or apology? Probably not. Your reputation would suffer and you'd never (!) be hired again. Show CARE the same respect by remaining communicative! 

What happens to an image after it's been adopted?

This is best explained on this family info page.

Can I display my approved restoration on my website?

Please ask for permission before doing so. Families deserve to see your beautiful restorations before anyone else. We heed our own guidance, and rarely display before/afters on our website, Flickr nor Twitter unless the restoration has been delivered to its Sandy family. If granted permission, show us the same respect and mention it was completed for CARE for Sandy to help promote our cause!

Note that if your RIP has not been approved to send to its family, you will not be granted permission to display your restoration. Sorry!

*Do not superimpose © copyright symbols nor self-promotional watermarks on our photos. Volunteers do not hold copyrights.

Why don't I see my Before/After on your website or on Flickr?

Whether or not you've received confirmation that your image has been approved, it may likely have already been sent to its family, as we tend to not post images online until respective family members have been notified and have sent confirmation that a given restored photo has been received. We also frequently choose to set some restorations aside for minor spit n' polish detailing by staff "fixer uppers," so as to get volunteers started on new adoptions, as going through several additional rounds of "coaching" emails with less experienced volunteers often takes longer than performing minor amendments ourselves. We may also simply be extraordinarily busy. 

I've been told my restoration has been approved. Why is it still in your Adopted! album?

We do not remove photos from our Adopted! album until we've had the opportunity to post them in in our Before/After album. We do this so as to not forget to remove or post any of your woooonderful restorations. This also keeps scanned photo numbers accurate and prevents duplicate postings. 

I've submitted an adoption request and/or restoration but haven't heard back. It's been more than a month. I'm frustrated. Why haven't I received a reply?!

Adoption requests are usually answered speedily within 1-3 days. Though a RIP, especially if it needs amendments, may take as long as two weeks to respond to. If more than a week has passed since you submitted an adoption request or if more than two weeks have passed since you submitted a RIP, consider the following:

  • Check your spam bin frequently and alter your settings so that your spam folder does not automatically delete. Our g-mails often get pegged as spam. 
  • Be sure you've followed RIP return instructions and have sent a RESTORATION COMPLETE e-mail. Google Drive notifications and many alt sharing services like Dropbox have no-reply addresses, thus you will not receive auto-responses. If you have not received an auto-reply, feel free to reach out anew.
  • We're crazy busy. CARE stopped counting e-mails answered when we hit 15,000. We promise we appreciate you! We'll answer as soon as we possibly can!
  • We're inhumanly busy, due to scanning event coordination. Monitor our calendar. If you see events on our agenda, be prepared to remain extra patient.
  • Family inquiries, event inquiries, time-sensitive press inquiries, new registrations and adoption inquiries are answered much more swiftly than RIPs (Restorations In Progress), and in that order. RIPs fall last in our queue. Why? 85% of all restorations are returned for at least minor amendments. 50% are returned for moderate to major amendments. It takes a lot longer to craft a custom tutorial, than it does a generic reply. 
  • Your fellow volunteers have not been heeding instructions. Ignoring this page and this page are hands down THE most common reason our to-answer-queue becomes perpetually backed up. Help yourself and help others by self-monitoring/troubleshooting your own restorations for potential issues. So that we won't need to spend 10-30 minutes pointing out what has already been explained on our website in great detail.
  • Please remember CARE is not a formal 501(c) with a salaried staff. Our few administrative volunteers are balancing regular FT jobs, family and significant others. What little free time we have is almost exclusively dedicated to CARE. (CARE's founder has been working 40hrs regular hours per week + 40-60hrs per week on CARE, ever since its 11/10/13 inception. But has still managed to dedicate over 5,700 hours to CARE — for FREE. Basically she rarely sleeps. This organization is truly a labor of love. Thanks for your rockstar patience.)