Everything You Need to Know: Information, Rules and Terms


Although we see news reports of violence, greed, death, and disaster every day, there is also a lot of good out there. In fact, there’s probably a lot more good than bad.  But people all over the world need to see it more. Something amazing happens when people see kindness: they feel a lot better. They are inspired by optimism, gratitude, compassion, and joy, and show a willingness to volunteer and help others.  

Envision Kindness is a non-profit (charity) organization based in Connecticut, USA, that promotes kindness, compassion, joy, and love through the sharing of images and stories of kindness. Driven by science, our goal is to improve individual lives and communities by inspiring goodness and happiness in as many people as possible.  

The objective of this contest is to see and share kindness, compassion, and empathy with others. Can you capture kindness in its many forms?

Why participate?  What can contestants get out of the contest?

Did you ever think that the world could use more kindness, compassion, joy, and love? How about social justice?  This is your chance to capture it and share it. By submitting to this contest, your work will be recognized and will help to spread kindness around the world. You also can potentially win cash prizes to do whatever you want with, including showing yourself or others some kindness!

What does Envision Kindness do with the images?

We use images to inspire kindness. That is how we accomplish our mission. To do so, many of the images that are submitted to this contest may be used to further Envision Kindness’ mission to help people see kindness and do more kindnesses.  All image usage will be exclusively for EK projects, outreach, fundraising, and mission building and will not be sold to 3rd parties outright without the consent or possible further compensation to the image producers. We ask for a non-exclusive license to use the image.

Image use may be on social media, in print, in displays in specific locations, or even perhaps in a gallery.  Sometimes we may need to modify the image slightly to accomplish that. You can see an example of how we may use an image to inspire kindness here (Monsoon Humanity).  

So while you may not win a prize, your work can still make the world a better place.  And we credit the creator(s) of the image so that people can recognize your work.


  1. This contest is open to all photographers 18 years of age and older.
  2. There is no geographic restriction on the origin of the contestant (also see “prizes” below) or where the submitted entries were captured, except where prohibited by law for that country or state.
  3. Participants must submit their own original work.
  4. Participants may submit up to 5 entries total. An entry consists of one photo, in addition to the completed information fields.
  5. Images of kindness can be either as they occurred (documentary style) or as they are conceived of (or recreated) to illustrate concepts or past events.  The submissions are only as limited as the creativity of the photographer.
  6. All submissions must:
    • Be at least 3000 Pixels on long dimension at 300 dpi
    • Use Adobe RGB for color space
    • Be JPEG (at max quality) or TIFF file formats up to 10MB file size
  7.  All submission must be made through the dedicated contest platform: envisionkindnesscontest.org.  Submissions received outside this platform (via email or other methods) will not be accepted.
  8. All content submitted must be entirely original with all rights owned by the submitter. Material violating copyright laws will be disqualified. If there is more than one creator for a submission, the other co-creators need to be acknowledged and have given permission to the named creator who submits the entry.  Submitter must be able to grant Envision Kindness a non-exclusive license to use the image(s).
  9. Content must be appropriate for all audiences. The content should be universally positive although “negative” content that has clear kindness relevance and results in an uplifting message will also be accepted.
  10. Submissions must be entirely devoid of the following:
    • Nudity/explicit sexual content
    • Excessive violence/aggression/hostility
    • Anything demeaning or otherwise insulting or dehumanizing
  11.  All submissions will be reviewed by the contest administrators for adherence with this policy as well as the base standards and specifications described above.
  12. Submissions that do not appear to have anything to do with kindness, compassion, empathy, or love may be rejected at the discretion of Envision Kindness staff.
  13. Entries that have been published elsewhere are acceptable as long as there are no restrictions to provide Envision Kindness a non-exclusive license to use the image as described under “Terms”.
  14. Photos from previous Envision Kindness contests are acceptable as long as they have not recieved any award through an Envision Kindness competition (i.e. First Place, Public Choice, Honorable Mention).
  15. Model releases are required from any and all individuals captured in their submission having a realistic expectation of privacy. Envision Kindness has model release forms available here. Please see “Terms” below for more detail regarding Model Releases.
  16. All submissions must adhere to all posted rules and terms of participation and be received by the November 13, 2018 deadline to be eligible for consideration for awards (on World Kindness Day!).
  17. There is no entry fee for entering the contest.
  18. This contest and the payment of prize money is governed by the laws of the United States of America.
  19. All decisions are final.

 Contest Schedule

 Submission Open: August 3, 2018

  1. Final Submission Deadline: November 13, 2018, at 11:59 pm EDT

  2. Online voting: November 15 – November 20, 2018, at 11:59 pm EDT

  3. Winners announced: December 2018 (exact date to be announced)


  1. All entries that have been properly submitted are reviewed to be sure they meet all standards and requirements of the contest.
  2. Once approved, submissions are posted to the contest website.  The first step is public voting, in which the public selects 20 of the 40 finalists.  All photographers will be notified when voting will open. All submitted and approved photos are eligible for public voting.  The top point (vote) recipient will win a prize.
  3. The other 20 finalists are selected by Envision Kindness staff.
  4. Once the 40 finalists have been determined, these 40 images be eligible for private judging.  
  5. Distinguished Judges Selection: Our accomplished judges have volunteered to review the submissions and select the winners of the contest. The names and brief biographies can be seen here. Entries will be judged for both the inspirational effect of the submission as well as for technical quality and creativity.
  6. Public voting: On November 15, 2018, the contest portal will open for public voting. The portal will be available on other platforms as well. Contestants should publicize and promote their submission(s) and solicit votes. The top 20 vote recipients in each category will automatically qualify as finalists to be considered by the judges in the final selection of the winners. In addition, the top vote-getter will win the Public Choice prize.
  7. In addition to the top 20 vote recipients, Envision Kindness will send up to 20 additional submissions to the judging round who were not top vote recipients.
  8. All judging is considered final and binding.
  9. Envision Kindness reserved the right not to award all prizes in the event an insufficient number of eligible entries meeting the minimum judging criteria are received, as determined by Envision Kindness and the judges at their sole discretion.
  10. Envision Kindness reserves the right to extend contest deadlines at any point.


 There will be five prizes awarded:

  1. First place, Public Choice and three Honorable Mentions
  2. The Public Choice prize is earned by popular (public) vote. You promote your entries and the world gets to pick their favorites! The top vote-getter will win a Public Choice Prize.

First Place: $500

Public Choice Award: $500

Honorable Mention (3 chosen): $100 each

Each photo can only win one prize, whichever is greater.


By accepting these terms, I, the Participant, agree to the following:

  1. Voluntary Participation: That participation in this contest is entirely voluntary
  2. Rules, Decisions, and Prizes:
    • To abide by the contest rules
    • That the decisions of the contest judges are final
    • All US federal, state and local taxes and any other fees from receiving prizes are the sole responsibility of the prize winners
    • If the winner(s) of any prize is found to be ineligible or decline the prize, the prize will be forfeited. Envision Kindness and the judges, at their sole discretion, may choose whether to award the prize to another contestant
  3. License to Use Submitted Content: I (the “Participant”) agree to license to Envision Kindness, Inc (“Envision Kindness”), the non-exclusive worldwide right to use the submitted content provided in the form of photographic images and accompanying text (all considered Content). I, the Participant, acknowledge that I am at least 18 years of age and own the copyright to the content provided to Envision Kindness.  I recognize that there is no expectation of compensation for submitting this Content. If there are other creators of the submitted Content, then I, the Participant, warrants that all co-creators agree with the terms of the contest. Pursuant to this license agreement, Participant and any co-creators grant non- exclusive permission for the following usage of the Content:
    • Display on the Envision Kindness website or Envision Kindness related websites (such as a future contest website);
    • circulation via e-mail and similar messaging services (e. g., Twitter, Facebook, or an app) to Envision Kindness subscribers and the general public;
    • display in physical exhibits in venues such as galleries or museums or theaters;
    • publication as part of a collective work in book, journal, calendar or other forms;
    • display on monitors/screens in public spaces
    • use for promoting Envision Kindness and Envision Kindness-sponsored events (including events for which Envision Kindness is not the sole sponsor);
    • Envision Kindness may modify the content or create derivative works at the discretion of Envision Kindness;
    • and testing in social science research that Envision Kindness undertakes to understand how these images affect people.
  4. Copyright
    • Participant retains the copyright and grants Envision Kindness a non-exclusive license to use (and potentially modify)  Content as consistent with its mission.
    • Participant warrants that he or she is the owner of the copyright to all Content submitted to Envision Kindness and that the Content does not violate any laws or the rights of any individuals or business entities including copyrights, trade secrets, privacy rights, and right to privacy.
    • If there are co-creators of the submitted Content, then Participant warrants that the co-creators have all given approval for submission of the Content to this contest and for its potential use as described above.
  5. If published, then Content will be identified (credited) as work of Participant (and co-creators, as indicated).
  6. Accompanying Information and Model Releases:
    • Participant warrants that the information provided to Envision Kindness (whether entered onto the contest website or in any form of communication with Envision Kindness staff) is complete and accurate to the best of their knowledge.
    • Participant also warrants that they have received model releases from any and all individuals captured in their Content having a realistic expectation of privacy (not in a public space). If any person appearing in any photograph is under the age of majority in their state/ province/ territory of residence the signature of a parent or legal guardian is required on each release.  In addition, any information contained in the model release is complete and accurate and that, if a model release is provided, the persons depicted in Content have consented to publication or use of their likeness for purposes such as advertising, promotion, placement on commercial products, and fundraising. I, the Participant, agree to be responsible for retaining the model release for seven years and agree to provide the model release(s) upon written request by Envision Kindness.
  7. Waiver and Release:
    • The Participant of the submitted work, as well as any co-creators, shall indemnify, release and forever discharge and hold harmless Envision Kindness, its agents, officers, directors, employees, associates, successors and assigns from any and all liability, claims, and demands of whatever kind or nature, either in law or in equity, which arise or may hereafter arise from my association and engagement with Nonprofit. The indemnity shall apply to any liabilities and expenses (including attorneys’ fees and costs) or claim that I, the Participant, may have against Envision Kindness with respect to financial cost, bodily injury, personal injury, illness, death, or property damage or other loss that may result from my engagement with the Envision Kindness Photography Contest, including but not limited to the production of materials for Envision Kindness or participation in any Envision Kindness  events.
  8. Cancellation of Contest: If for any reason the contest must be canceled, as determined by Envision Kindness, then Envision Kindness will not retain any rights to the submitted content.
  9. General Terms:
    • If any term or provision of this Agreement is found to be unenforceable for any reason, the remainder of this Agreement shall remain in full force and effect and shall be fully enforceable on its remaining terms and conditions.
    • Participant agrees that all claims involving the content shall be brought in State of Connecticut, USA.
    • This agreement is the complete and exclusive statement of the Agreement between Participant and Envision Kindness, which supersedes any proposal or prior agreement, oral or written, and any other communication between Participant and Envision Kindness, relating to the subject of this  Agreement.
    • This contest is governed by the laws of the United States of America