We ran the SharingStories workshop in Varanasi at the Buddha’s Smile School with twenty disadvantaged chidlren. Several months after this shot of Pankaj showing younger participants how to use a camera was taken he was found murdered, bound by duct tape in a drain, I was told because his father had failed to pay the most recent installment on his rickshaw and because life is cheap for those that live on the margins and his death would very likely not be investigaged. He was a remarkable child and so excited to participate in the program, his wish was to raise consciousness through photography, particularly to educate people as to the lives of those living in poverty in India and environmental issues he felt strongly about “I am learning photography . I want to take so many pictures I want to show these pictures and one day I will change the map of Varanasi, I will change the things , like the Ganges river is polluted, there should not be so much pollution. In future maybe I can change the things that are wrong , when I grow up I will change everything”.. You can see more of Pankaj’s work and profile page at http://sharingstories.org/members/pankaj/
The Peruvian program has run in Iquitos with art teachers Carlos and Juan Carlos working with young children to tell their own stories. Justin Touyz has been integral to the process, assisting with skype conversations between SharingStories and Carlos and Juan Carlos in both a translating, organisational and conceptual capacity. We are currently working with ten children and their work can be found at http://sharingstories.org/communities/iquitos/ .