Every year it seems I return to Emali, Kenya to document families experiencing water shortages in the extreme. ChildFund New Zealand is and has been working tirelessly in Emali to provide water access one community at a time. This year villages have been impacted by the El Niño weather pattern that is raging in neighboring Ethiopia (see previous blog entry). With families living in such remote areas, 100% access to the earth’s most essential resource may never be achieved in our lifetime, but it is comforting to see the problem made just a bit smaller each time I return.Read More
Post Tagged with: "maasai"
I’ve lived in Africa long enough to watch some kids grow up. I’ve seen a boy struggle with the effects of HIV through his formative years only to succumb to it at the age of twenty. But I’ve also seen an orphan rise to the top of his class, graduate university and go on to be the owner of a successful business. With so many of the children that I encounter here each day, I can’t help but wonder what will become of them in ten or twenty years. Emali, Kenya is divided by the Nairobi – Mombasa highway. It’s not only a physical boundary, but a geographic one as well. The south side of the road marks the boundary of the blistering, flat planes, home to the Maasai tribe, that receive little if any rain at all during the year. The north side marks the beginning of the hills[…]Read More
Many NGO’s focus on building livelihoods through agriculture. What about the people that live in areas where crop production is literally not a viable option? Kenya’s Emali district has been hit by recurring drought for the last decade, making farming next to impossible. In this documentary short, which I shot and edited, we see the blueprint of a grant from the Government of New Zealand implemented by ChildFund Kenya called “Building Resources in Two Drought Affected Communities.” As our narrators tell us, the aim of the program is not just to build secure livelihoods of the program’s participants, but also to preserve precious and unique cultural traditions and craftwork among the Kamba and Maasai peoples in Emali. Along the way we get an idea of the artists’ creation process and even a beauty tip from the Maasai. The program has made quite a splash in New Zealand media. 3News, Dominion[…]Read More
Every photographer will tell you that sometimes you have to wait around for the right shot; but don’t think there aren’t any shots while you’re just waiting around. I recently needed to photograph a girl from the Samburu tribe in Kenya whose family and community had been helped by ChildFund through the gift of a sheep. However, the livestock graze far away from her village and only come home around sunset. There was plenty to keep me occupied while I waited, but the sun was going down fast. The evening left me walking the sometimes fine line between fashion photography and photojournalism. PS. The sheep and the goats finally came home, and I got the shot I needed.Read More
Featured here are two recent videos of mine from locations across East Africa. The first is a ChildFund PSA that aired on television in the US and was filmed in Kenya’s remote Maasai land. Though ChildFund has other outlets for the footage, on this particular spot my four days of footage were cut down to meager 62 seconds. Post-production for this piece was done by the Causeway Agency. Though certainly not as polished, I did my own editing on the spot below for Light in Africa. The video is aimed at recruiting volunteers to come out to Tanzania and aid in the work. I myself am a volunteer alumnus of the organization that years ago helped inspire me to take root in East Africa. My Liberia assignment that was scheduled for this week has been postponed. I’ve instead been rerouted to Kenya to cover the catastrophic drought gripping the North[…]Read More
I’m currently on assignment with ChildFund in Kenya working on a television spot that will air in the US. The video concerns solar panels that the NGO has placed in schools and dormitories in two separate areas of the country. These photos come from remote Maasai land, north of the Tanzania border – far from any tarmacked road or mobile phone tower. The solar panels, which were of great help to me when charging camera batteries, are even more useful to the girls at Nanin’goi Girls’ Primary and Boarding School in Mosiro, Kenya. Here students can study in class and find their way around the dorms without relying on kerosene lanterns after the sun sets just after 6pm each day. ChildFund continually works with the elders of the community to ensure that the girls of the school are not subjected to early childhood marriage and female circumcision, practices still very[…]Read More