PHOTOS ARE MY VOICE
Before I was appointed as a Trustee for The Yearley Trust, I had not heard of Nalang, let alone Dhading District and the Nalang Model Academy School in Nepal.
The Trust started supporting the community of Nalang in many ways. One of them involved funding the materials and professional fees for the building of a 56 bed hostel, the construction of which took around 3 months. The labour was provided by the men and women of the village where the school is located.
As the Chairman, Mr John Yearly and myself were not planning to visit the project while the construction was ongoing, students were requested to send me a picture each week of the hostel construction progress. I shared with them ideas of how different angles of the ‘story’ and its ‘heros’ could be shown through their photos at each stage. The young people of Nalang are very enthusiastic about photography, curious, and motivated to learn ,and took the idea very much to heart This is how the idea of the project “Photos are My Voice” was born (they took turns using the camera we had provided) and they showed great personal aspects of the construction.
When I visited in February 2019, I held a 3 day training course, ‘Telling a Story through photography’. The students learnt some ways on how they can reflect on the way their own story is told by doing their own projects and telling their personal stories of subjects they are passionate about such as ‘My favourite teacher’ “How I celebrate’. etc.
I have 15 students now who continue with their own stories, some shots from which I am sharing here with you and if you wish to see their full work they are published on The Yearley Trust facebook page supported by a short written story on the subject.
I love learning about new cultures and exploring the world in every detail through the students eyes and different approaches …and I believe that spreading their stories will help us understand better the admirable people of Nepal. Because really Who could tell it better…….?