Starting to get very excited about being at Solas festival at the weekend….
I’ve had the pleasure of working with Christian Aid Scotland again recently, to photograph their Bridge Cross fundraising events. This past Saturday it was the Forth Bridge.
Join us in putting an end to poverty this Saturday at the Erskine Bridge, from 2pm. Find out more on the Christian Aid website.
Two years ago, I took some faltering steps towards the dream I hold closest to my heart:
photographs that change the world.
On a warm summers day 3 years ago, my friend Suse opened a door for me, which resulted in a summer spent documenting the work of Fields of Life in East Africa.
I spent almost two months based out of Kampala, working alongside short-term visiting teams and local staff, witnessing the joys and frustrations of Ugandan life. Falling in love with both the country and the people.
Four days ago, two bombs went off in two separate locations in Kampala, leaving 74 people dead.
One of those locations was Ethiopian Village Restaurant, a mere stones-throw from the FOL office.
That was my area. That is my area.
A lump forms in my throat as I remember walking past the restaurant and across the street to buy ice cream on lazy afternoons off, or get a boda boda into Bancafe.
Mercifully, the FOL staff are all safe. But my dear friends at Invisible Children lost one of their staff. Nate “Oteka” Henn had been working for IC for 18 months, and while I did not know him personally, several friends did. Nate fought for his Ugandan friends, for their stories, for hope for them, for the possibility of peace. His life inspired me even though we never met.
My mind wanders back so frequently to memories of that summer spent living my dream, and seeing it have an impact. It seems so far away now, and yet we wake each day with the opportunity to place our hands against the wounds of a broken world, to try to stop the bleeding. For our Ugandan friends it is a very literal bleeding this week. Perhaps for us the wounds are more hidden, our bleeding more internal.
May you place your hands over a wound this week and join so many others as we seek to make our lives a gift to those around us.
A stumbling, stuttering, sometimes-failing gift, but a gift nonethless.
I’ve had the privilege to work with Christian Aid again recently, to photograph a few of their recent fundraising events, the latest one being the Tay Bridge Cross on Saturday past. To find out more about Christian Aid and how to get involved, visit their website. It’s been such a joy to work with them again!
I have some insanely talented friends.
Last year as I did the Christian Aid gap year, I got to meet and get to know Kevin. Kevin has this rock star persona; he’s larger than life in a really understated way, and he’s funny and intelligent at the same time. One of those people we love to hate, because they’re good at everything.
Kevin wrote an article after we came back from the DR Congo last year, on water and sanitation in Kinshasa. That article, Trench Warfare, landed him among the finalists in the Guardian’s International Development journalism competition.
As a result, Kevin’s currently in India researching a new article for the Guardian, and he’s blogging his journey over at On The Silk Road. I highly recommend you check it out!
One of the cool things that was happening in the Christian Aid tent at Greenbelt over the weekend was an innovative rice show (trust me… you’ll want to read on) called ‘Of All The People In All The World’. Essentially, the show uses grains of rice to visualise world statistics, which each grain of rice representing one person. It’s a powerful way of comparing myself, one person, with all the people who aren’t me. Such as…
Caption on the left reads: Refugees in the world.
Caption on the right reads: Millionaires in the world.
You can find out a bit more about it on the Stan’s Cafe website.