World Renew – Free A Family in Mozambique

Hot on the heels of yesterday’s post, ‘Concern Worldwide – Securing a better future for Malawi’s girls‘, I have great pleasure in sharing another gallery of images from my recent work in Southern Africa, this time from Mozambique. I was commissioned by World Renew to visit the Khoma Family in Tete Province and tell the story of the organisation’s work with them through images, words and also video (which will be released soon). Please CLICK THE IMAGE below to go to the full gallery.

IMG39670 World Renew   Free A Family in Mozambique

CLICK THE IMAGE to explore the gallery.

‘Free A Family’ by World Renew

Free A Family is a programme developed by World Renew that seeks to help people overcome poverty through community projects in agriculture, health, nutrition, literacy and beyond. It aims to help all its participants secure nutritious food, clean water, improved health and increased income.

While most organisations that follow a sponsorship model present sponsors with material gathered from each of the families or children they work to show their development over time, World Renew believes that this is not a very efficient way of doing things. Instead, it has chosen a single ‘representative family’ from among the thousands in each of the world regions it’s working in, and is sharing just these families’ stories as their participation in the programme unfolds over time. Through this approach, they are able to keep administrative costs far lower, meaning that more of the funds donated can be used directly to help people in need.

The Khoma Family

This gallery introduces you to the Khoma Family in Mozambique, World Renew’s representative family for Southern Africa. Through these images and their detailed captions, you’ll meet Fidelis, Velinasi and five of their children. You’ll see how they live and work as rural subsistence farmers, and get an insight into how, through its local partner the Reformed Church in Mozambique, World Renew has been working with them to help them secure improved livelihoods in this country that lies 185th out of 187 countries and territories on the 2012 Human Development Index (HDI).

Usage rights may be purchased for all images in the gallery, but note that the photographer must be credited.

Concern Worldwide – Securing a better future for Malawi’s girls

Today, I have pleasure in sharing the first gallery of images from my recent month-long trip to Malawi and Mozambique. It comes from an assignment for Concern Worldwide in Malawi’s extreme south, where I was asked to create ‘knowledge products’ drawing on the lessons learned from the organisation’s education projects. While these held girls at the core, they focused variously on getting girls into schooling, improving the educational experience there and tackling school-related gender-based violence. Please CLICK THE IMAGE below to go to the full gallery.

IMG38916 Concern Worldwide   Securing a better future for Malawis girls

CLICK THE IMAGE to explore the gallery.

Gender inequality in Nsanje, Malawi

Malawi ranks 124th out of 186 countries on the 2012 Gender Inequality Index. Many girls in the southernmost district of Nsanje drop out of school as a result of forced marriages. Thus, there is marked gender disparity in access to essential tools for social and economic development. Indeed, gender inequality permeates the lives of most women and girls in Malawi, manifesting as exclusion from decision-making processes, lack of economic opportunities, low levels of education and high prevalence of violence.

Tackling school-related gender-based violence

Concern Worldwide’s education programmes in Nsanje seek to enable children, particularly girls and those from marginalised groups, to gain access to education so that they can develop to their fullest potential. To achieve this, Concern is implementing a project funded by the United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women, titled ‘Ending School-related Gender-based Violence in Malawi’. School-related gender-based violence represents a considerable barrier to participation in education, gender equality and achievement of Education for All and the Millennium Development Goals.

The project empowers students to speak out about issues that affect them using the medium of interactive theatre, and also engages men specifically to fight gender-based violence (GBV) as the main perpetrators of GBV themselves.

Using theatre and ‘happy classrooms’

These images document this work, led by Concern’s partner Theatre for a Change, and also allied education work that has sought not only to get more girls enrolled in school but also to keep them there. For example, working with a local organisation called boNGO using funding from The Scottish Government, Concern has created ‘Happy Classrooms‘ designed to bring colour and liveliness to the learning experience.

Also documented is the success story of Alinafe, a young girl who is doing well in school and yet almost dropped out recently to get married.

Note that images are displayed in the order captured, not as a story. Nevertheless, full details of the scene can be found in the captions. Usage rights may be purchased for all images in the gallery, but note that the photographer and Concern Worldwide’s project must both be credited.

Postcard from Volgograd, Russia

So after a month in Southern Africa, where the temperatures were rapidly rising with the onset of summer, here I am in Russia. I must admit that I was expecting it to be considerably colder than it has been while I’ve been in St Petersburg and Volgograd. I thought there’d be at least a foot of snow on the ground wherever I went, but no, they’ve not yet seen any snow at all this winter. Sadly, this is yet more evidence of climate change, which I see everywhere I go. Just three weeks ago, I was hearing how rain and drought at unexpected and untypical times is wreaking havoc with Malawian subsistence farmers’ efforts to keep themselves fed throughout the year. I’ve told similar stories before from both Thailand and Kenya. On the face of it, it would seem that Russians have considerably less to complain about; let’s hope they don’t get an even deeper, more severe winter when the sub-zero conditions finally come.

travel photography russia volgograd stalingrad motherland calls 42272 Postcard from Volgograd, Russia

The Motherland Calls in Volgograd, Russia.

Anyway, on a more cheerful note, here’s a postcard for you. It’s of ‘The Motherland Calls’, built in 1967 to commemorate the Battle of Stalingrad during World War II, one of the bloodiest battles in the history of warfare (did I just say ‘cheerful’?!). At the time, it was the world’s largest statue, though it has since been trumped by 11 others. I captured the image after completing the first day of my current assignment for SmileTrain (who I was recently shooting for in Malawi) here in Volgograd. “There’s only one sight to see here”, I was told by my host. So off we trotted, shortly before sunset. And what a sight it is! From this angle, it appears to dwarf even the clouds.