ASV Looks Forward To The Return Of Ibero Interns

After Supper Visions is fortunate to have a number of volunteer groups who see the immense talent in ASV artists and sincerely want to help the artists grow in their experience as photographers. Some volunteers help throughout the year, such as the Photo Team members who work weekly with the artists to help them learn the art of photography and become increasingly skilled in taking creative, imaginative photos.

Other volunteers join ASV as the annual Photo Exhibition nears and their assistance is greatly appreciated, as well. One of these groups is the Ibero interns who come to Catholic Charities as part of the Ibero Transnational Service Project (ITSP), coordinated under the Catholic Charities Office of Latino Affairs.

Cary Rositas-Sheftel, Ph.D is the Manager of Latino and University Initiatives for Catholic Charities.  In the beautiful piece below, Cary describes the ITSP project and the inspiring outcomes of this program. See also the wonderful photos of the interns assisting at the ASV Photo Exhibition last year. Thank you, Cary for sharing this with all who follow the AVV website. We look forward to welcoming back the Ibero interns this summer!



Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago has a long-standing history of service to immigrants. Primary among the immigrant groups we serve are Latinos. Recognizing the growth of the Latino community in Cook and Lake Counties, the Office of Latino Affairs was established in 2007. The focus of this office is three-fold:
A) Promote Catholic Charities services to Latinos through community outreach and education.
B) Identify unmet needs in the Latino community and work collaboratively toward creative solutions.
C) Act as a resource to parishes and community partners, streamlining the referral process for Latinos in need of services.

The Ibero Transnational Service Project (ITSP) started in 2007. This project is coordinated under the Office of Latino Affairs. This mutually beneficial initiative between Loyola University (Chicago), Iberoamericana University (Mexico) and Catholic Charities provides students from Mexico with an increased awareness of migration issues in the U.S. while providing culturally responsive services to Latino families participating in Catholic Charities programs. These bilingual and bicultural Mexican students are majoring in psychology, communication, international relations, law, nutrition, history, fashion design, art, among others. Most of the students come from Mexico City.

Homelessness has a very different face in Mexico. According to the Institute of Social Integration and Assistance, in 2017 there were 6,754 homeless persons in Mexico City. Eighty seven percent were men and twelve percent were women. Unfortunately, they suffer from discrimination and criminalization; there is a lack of support programs for them. This same year, the city of Chicago reported 5,657 homeless persons (sheltered and unsheltered); less women than men.

In this same year, the city of Chicago had 2.7 million people compared to Mexico City with 21.3 million (7.8 times larger than Chicago). Based on this information, the amount of homeless people in Mexico City is a lot less than in Chicago.

When the Ibero interns arrive to Catholic Charities, they realize the long lines of homeless clients and questions arise. The issue of not having a place to live is not very common in their country so this is a revelation of a social challenge. During their internship orientation, we talk about homelessness in Mexico and in the United States, how Catholic Charities is a beam of hope to persons experiencing this situation, the suppers at St. Vincent hall and After Supper Visions program.

All of them are very moved and willing to help. Some of them request cards with information about Catholic Charities so they are prepared in case someone asks them for help. We had some others that committed their time every Tuesday to help by serving supper. These Ibero interns graduated from college and every time they visit Chicago, they stop by Catholic Charities on a Tuesday to help again serving supper. One of them now brings his wife along.

For the past five years, Ibero summer interns have helped at the After Supper Visions event. We share with them the purpose of the event, proceeds from the money raised, visit Mary’s Closet so they can grasp the complete transformational process that our clients are about to have and they are going to witness. They help during the event by serving appetizers to our clients-artist and guests as well as helping buyers by filling out purchase forms. These are roles that they are not used to have. For some, this is the first time in their whole life that they are going to do something like this.

We have the case of an Ibero intern who was super shy and introverted but at the After Supper Visions event, she was the number one seller! When I asked how this did happen she shared with me that when she realized the impact that helping buyers filling out forms was going to have in the life of the artists, she decided to shake away her shyness and do her best.

The Ibero interns write a reflection after this experience and they discover the true meaning of serving others and the happiness that this brings to them. “Serving is not doing what I want but being there where they need me”, one of them expressed. They also realized the assumptions or stereotypes that they might have about homelessness and how these are shattered once they are placed in a different position. “It is amazing the empowerment that the client-artists have when they are proudly sharing their photographs. This experience have also transformed me and now I “see” a social challenge when in the past I was blind about it”, another commented.

We will continue supporting the After Supper Visions as every year. This is also a great opportunity for the Ibero interns to reflect about the need that Mexico has to respond in a better way to homelessness issue, especially if there might be an increase of migrant people living in the streets while waiting for asylum in the United States.

Through the Ibero Transnational Service Project, Catholic Charities is not only levering services to the Latino population in a culturally responsive manner. Catholic Charities is fulfilling the commitment of preparing future young Mexican leaders to become change agents to fight to what they believe is right, just and fair in a compassionate and professional way.

Dr. Cary Rositas-Sheftel has been working for Catholic Charities since 2013. She started with the Head Start-Child Development Centers by implementing a bilingual program and engaging Latino families in the education of their young children. Currently she is the Latino and University Manager at the Office of Latino Affairs. Previously, she worked as a professor of the school of education and psychology as well as the director of the Center for Solidarity and Philanthropy at Universidad de Monterrey, Mexico. She loves working with Catholic Charities because of the alignment of its mission to her personal values. In her current position, she has the opportunity to strategically serve the Latino community as well as promote in college students the importance of serving others as part of their personal and professional life.




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Creative Thoughts Teeming On A Cold Winter Day












ASV artists continue attending classes this winter, as Photo Team members help review galleries of photos and choose which images they will present in the annual photo exhibition. At yesterday’s class, artist Ruby T. said, “I am going to explore new things this year! A tree can be viewed in so many different ways as you walk around it, that it’s always new.” Robert F. added, “I love to edit my pictures, making them really, really good.” Longtime Photo Team member Jody O’Connor observes, “The picture of the three artists is my favorite. It is so interesting to listen as the artists talk about taking photos!” 










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New Year, New Excitement As ASV Joins Chicago Flower & Garden Show March 20-24


Calling all gardeners, and anyone who loves flowers! ASV is delighted to be one of the featured vendors participating in the fabulous Chicago Flower & Garden Show, March 20-24 at Navy Pier. Started in 1847 by the Chicago Horticultural Society, the Chicago Flower & Garden Show has expanded through the years to become a family-friendly gardening extravaganza for people of all ages. Included are a wide range of life-sized gardens, Do It Yourself workshops, hand-on experiences and a lively marketplace to showcase a multitude of beautiful floral and gardening items.

Please look for the ASV booth! We will have note cards and gifts for sale, all created with gorgeous photos taken by ASV artists. We look forward to seeing you there, and welcoming Spring together!  For more information, see

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Looking Ahead…

“If you see something that moves you, and then snap it, you keep a moment.”   – Linda McCartney


                      Happy New Year, From Everyone At After Supper Visions!                             

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It’s Not Too Late! Order Your ASV Holiday Cards and Gifts Today!

Are you searching for that “perfect” gift for someone on your list? Look no further than this website! ASV offers a wonderful selection of coasters, magnets, ornaments and note card sets, all created from photos taken by ASV artists. Click on XMAS GIFTS and GIFT SHOP on our HOMEPAGE to learn more!

Also: Don’t miss our gorgeous collection of Christmas and Holiday  cards, guaranteed to bring your a smile to all who receive them! These cards also feature photos taken by the talented artists in the ASV program!

A reminder: ASV artists receive a portion of every sale, so your gift to others truly keeps on giving when you choose ASV this holiday season!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, from everyone at After Supper Visions!

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First Bank Of Highland Park Opens Month-Long Exhibit Featuring Catholic Charities And ASV

Throughout the month of December, Catholic Charities and its inspiring After Supper Visions program are being featured in the Main Lobby of First Bank of Highland Park, located at 1835 First Street in Highland Park, IL. The exhibit is presented on the bank’s “Ruth Fell Wander Community Art Wall,” and it includes After Supper Visions photos along with a wide variety of informational materials about the 174 programs Catholic Charites offers in Cook and Lake counties, to people of all races and religions.

At a special opening night reception at First Bank of Highland Park on December 3rd, Audrey Goldman, bank spokesperson, commended the finished display, saying, “I am amazed when I hear the number of one million people served each year by Catholic Charities. We were delighted to feature Catholic Charities on the art wall two years ago, and when I recently read about the After Supper Visions program, I immediately thought that it was time to feature Catholic Charities again, along with After Supper Visions.”

Angie Carlstrom, Assistant Vice-President at the bank and a Catholic Charities volunteer echoed the same thought. She said, “The photography is just beautiful.”

As a private, family owned and operated bank, First Bank of Highland Park includes community outreach in its mission statement. As stated by CEO Randy Green on the bank’s website, “With a bank-wide culture of caring and giving we consistently help support our growing community.” In 2017, the bank’s directors, officers and staff served on boards and committees of local non-profit organizations to provide over 2,500 hours of volunteer service. As Audrey explains, “For over sixty years, giving back has been part of who we are.”

The community wall was created in 2002 to showcase artwork from local schools and non-profit organizations. The wall is named after Ruth Fell Wander, a former member of the bank’s Board of Directors who was extraordinarily generous with her time and talent in serving First Bank of Highland Park and numerous civic and philanthropic organizations. Audrey adds, “In honor of Ruth, this wall was designed to give greater visibility and increase public awareness about not-for-profits that promote worthy causes. In this case, self-esteem is so important, and After Supper Visions is all about building self-esteem, and opening doors to pathways.”

Terri Denny, Catholic Charities Senior Director, Lake County and Regional Services expressed appreciation for the bank’s generosity in offering Catholic Charities this exhibit. At the reception Terri said, “We are so grateful for this wonderful opportunity to increase awareness of Catholic Charities and After Supper Visions. Your community art wall provides an amazing venue for bank customers, and all neighboring residents to learn more about the services we provide.” Catholic Charities Lake County Regional Program Manager Lisa Roti added, “We owe this all to Audrey! It was her great idea, and we so appreciate her making this all possible.”

On a recent visit to the bank, to set up the display, a passerby approached Lisa, expressing concern about several of her acquaintances who are seniors. “Do you investigate elder abuse?” the woman asked Lisa. Lisa responded, “Yes. We have a hotline that anyone can call, twenty four hours a day if they are concerned about any aspect of a senior’s life.” Lisa further explained, “We often meet people who are seeking assistance in one area while we are working on helping in another area. We are always grateful for any opportunity to help someone in need. More information can be found at”

All are encouraged to go to First Bank of Highland Park’s Facebook page and “like” the December community art wall display. First Bank generously offers to make a monthly donation to each organization featured on its community art wall, $2 donation for every Facebook “like” up to $250. As Audrey says, “There are many benefits of us all supporting one another. We invite our clients and everyone in our area to stop in our bank this month and learn more about Catholic Charities and After Supper Visions.”

Attendees at last evening’s Opening Reception included (l. to r.): Audrey Goldman, Angie Carlstrom, Lisa Roti, Terri Denny and Karen Daniels.

See below for additional photos of this wonderful exhibition.

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Beyond The Basics

It was another very productive afternoon in ASV photo class today. As seen in these photos, the artists are learning and collaborating on all aspects of photography. Mike B. was on hand to share some of his pictures with his fellow artists, while Maurice and Nathaniel became more familiar with all of the features of their cameras. Sharon C. said, “It’s wonderful to look at each other’s photos, because they inspire you to do new things.” Andrea C. agreed and added, “I try to remember the things I learn in class when I’m out photographing. Class is so helpful!” 

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Spread Joy This Year With ASV Holiday Cards and Gifts

As Thanksgiving approaches and our thoughts start to turn to Christmas, we enthusiastically call your attention our wonderful selection of holiday cards and gifts that are sure to bring a smile to everyone on your gift and mailing list this year. Choose from beautiful Christmas/holiday cards, ornaments, note cards and magnets, all featuring stunning photos taken by ASV artists. Remember, too that ASV artists receive a portion of every purchase made on this website, so yours truly will be gifts that keep on giving!

Please note: Personalization is available for our Christmas and holiday cards. Our cards come in packages of 10 and the printing cost is based on the number of sets (one card and one envelope laser jet printed): 100 sets for $548; 150 sets for $605; 500 sets for $731; and 1,000 sets for $941.  So, with printing it costs approximately $5.50 to print and $6.00 to print and mail each card.

As you make your selections, if you have any questions, please contact Katie Tuten, Catholic Charities Strategic Initiatives Manager at

We are most grateful for your interest and support of ASV and its artists. Happy Thanksgiving!

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Sagence Consulting: A Valued Friend Of ASV

The growth of After Supper Visions over the past sixteen years could not have been possible without the support of our corporate donors. Some corporate donors make donations that help minimize costs of our photo exhibition, allowing more proceeds to go to the artists. Others offer discounts for reprinting artists’ photos on prints, cards and gifts. Still others have purchased numerous ASV prints and had them framed and hung in their corporate offices, helping to “spread the word” about the program and the immense talent of its artists. The management team at Sagence Consulting is among these generous donors, and we are delighted to have had the chance to catch up with them recently and share their donor experience with you.

Sagence Consulting is a management advisory firm that focuses on assisting clients through customization of their data management. Sagence works with Fortune 500 companies in the financial services, healthcare, insurance and technology industries. In 2012, Sagence CEO Bruce Quade and his wife, Leesa bought fourteen ASV prints and hung them as a collage on one, large wall in the Sagence Chicago offices. Leesa learned about ASV through her childhood friend, Katie Tuten, Catholic Charities Strategic Initiatives Manager, who coordinates ASV weekly operations.

As Leesa explains, “We were especially drawn to the black and white ASV photos. At the same time we made our ASV purchase, we also held a contest for photography majors at DePaul University and Columbia College. It was called, ‘The Art & Science of Data.’ We have moved locations since then, and now our offices are decorated with a combination of After Supper Visions photos and winning entries from that contest. ASV photos are displayed right along those of professional photographers. Our clients are so impressed with the caliber of the photography and they love the history behind our artwork.”

Upon hearing this story, ASV Photo Team member Jody O’Connor replied, “Thank you, Leesa. We hear that every year. Art enthusiasts come to our photo exhibition and tell the artists that their photos are as good as any they see at gallery openings across the city.”

Sagence Partner Marisela Lawson added, “Our website features After Supper Visions in ‘Our Community Work’ section, too. We want visitors to know we believe in this program, and we even encourage those who may want to seek employment with us to learn more about ASV.” Learn more at

Our warmest thanks to Bruce and Leesa Quade, and everyone at Sagence Consulting for their extraordinary support of ASV. You are helping create greater awareness about ASV and its very talented artists. We are honored to partner with you in “Developing Film, Talent and Hope.”

Sagence Founding Partner and CEO Bruce Quade (right), with his wife Leesa (center) and Partner Marisela Lawson (left) at the office entrance of Sagence Consulting.

                                ASV photos are featured throughout the Sagence offices.

Admiring the ASV photos on another wall at Sagence are (l. to r.): Bruce Quade, Leesa Quade, Katie Tuten, Marisela Lawson and Jody O’Connor.

Another beautiful ASV photo of the Chicago skyline displayed at the Sagence offices.

(L. to R) Jody O’Connor, Katie Tuten, Leesa Quade, Bruce Quade and Marisela Lawson appreciate another collection of artwork combining ASV photos with those of professional photographers.

The sleek, innovative Sagence Chicago offices in which ASV photos are featured as part of the permanent décor.





















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Garden Memories

After several weeks learning the basics of photography in a classroom setting, it was time last week for ASV artists to be outdoors and experience the joy of being behind the lens of a camera. In the first row of photos above, ASV Photo Team Member Michael Seward joined Andy A. and Regina H. in a photo shoot, where concepts such as lighting, background and focus all came together in creating beautiful photos.

The second row of photos above are also from last Tuesday, as the artists were supportively critiquing one another in class. Sheri H. said, “I need to go to different places to get the photos I want. I intend on taking my flower pictures. We had a garden when I was young and I always took care of the flowers. This project is reminding me of then.” Pointing to one of Sheri’s photos, fellow artist Shar said, “This one looks like water in the Caribbean.” Recalling fond memories and making new ones makes for a very productive afternoon.

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