Early 2019 Update
Obviously, the main news is the fantastic response from the latest exhibition of the children’s work at the Playhouse in Norwich.
Thanks so much to those of you who attended the supporters evening. I trust you all enjoyed viewing the work at such a lovely vibrant venue.
One of the huge positives of the venue is the sheer diversity of the audience that were able to view the work, something, as a photographer I am always aspiring to. I received some wonderful feedback on both the images and the story of the project and that of the children.
I’ve been giving lots of talks recently – in fact it’s almost been one every 10 days or so. Remember, if you have a club or society, I would be more than happy to come and talk about the project. Perhaps one of the most interesting talks of late was one in Norwich, given to the Norwich & Norfolk Association of the Blind and their photographic group.
The donations have continued to flow in for the project, in both financial and equipment terms – in fact, following a couple of hugely productive talks, three sizeable donations (as well as many just as important, smaller donations) came in for the project, from Roger Harrod, Joan in Oulton Broad & Alan @ CHPV – thank you so much! While a box of cameras has also been soured from the lovely Francesco at WEX photo In Edinburgh (as well as donations from many more you)
I’ve been in pretty constant communication with Ronald at Eden School, who is so keen to develop the photography further and has recently got someone in to teach further digital photography to some of the students – I’m unsure of the exact teachings and possibilities at the moment. Sarah, at Katuna Marps (who I worked with in 2018) is also on my radar and I continue to communicate directly with her, considering reworking the project with some more of her vulnerable children, but also directly developing relationships with the mothers, perhaps in some way empowering them to change their work and possible life outcomes, as many of you know, I’m deeply concerned by one or two of the young girls I worked with in 2018, who will be coming to the end of their education shortly and I fear may follow their mother into the profession.
Prima & Vincent – the two children living in the mountains, alone suffering with HIV have again been at the forefront of chats and developments. I have offered to send some finance to help with the education of these two young children – however, Sarah (Katuna Marps) believes that building them a basic permeant home is the most suitable investment – I’m unsure at the moment – we are continuing to discuss this and looking for the best way forward.
In the meantime, I have just sent these two lovely children (via Sarah) 135,000 ugx for Christmas. I’ve asked Sarah to purchase some special food for them and provide a little help over the festive period.
While still considering the options for working with Marps again on the border, I have been having in depth conversations with authorities in Rwanda. Celestin is someone I met in 2012, when I cycled to Rwanda – he was part of the Olympic committee that we flew back to London with and I’ve stayed in touch with him ever since. Celestin, now living in Japan, kindly put me in touch with someone at the Rwandan regional government who works with disability centres across the country. They are very keen to implement the project in the near future. I guess it’s another case of watch this space.