Archive for the ‘Humanitarian Causes’ Category


“Almost giving happens when good thought and intentions don’t turn into actions”

A poweful message, a beautiful campaign, don’t almost give.

The Generous Nation campaign PSAs demonstrate what happens when people almost give, with the hope to inspire more giving. The Generous Nation campaign is designed to inspire Americans to translate their everyday compassion and good intentions into action by giving more often.



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Ken Meeks, AIDS patient, three days before dying.- Alon Reininger (Contact Press)

I did not want to do just a story about Ken Meeks. Ken was a character in a bigger story. He knew that I was taking his picture in a broader context. It just happened that I took a picture of him in one particular situation that struck a raw nerve with a lot of people.- Alon Reninger

The work of Alon Reininger had a significant impact humanizing AIDS with the fist images published of American patients in Life magazine in 1986. You can see here several videos with an interview of Alon Reininger describing the documentation of people suffering AIDS. This image (winner of the Word Press Photo award in 1986) was selected by Photo District News magazine as one of the most important images of photojournalism in the period 1980-2000. American Photo magazine selected Alon Reininger as one of the underrated masters of photography. Today, 20 years after this image was published the AIDS pandemic remains one of the most important humanitarian catastrophes of our times (more on this in other posts in this blog and elsewhere).


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by Michael Thompson

Fashion-celebrity photographer Michael Thompson, who began his career assisting the legendary Irvin penn, shot the beautiful and original images for the campaign “I Am African“, in partnership with Conde Nast. See the images here. Possibly you have seen the images in magazines few months ago, but I wanted to link to this work because I find the campaign and images very powerful and captivating.

Interestingly, I found a charity site that is auctioning limited edition prints online here.

The campaign was launched few months ago to raise awareness and funds to combat Aids in Africa. It features a number of celebrities like Mischa Barton, Richard Gere, Lucy Liu, Gwyneth Paltrow, Sarah Jessica Parker, David Bowie, Alicia Keys and Lenny Kravitz etc. The combination of black and white images, with splashes of color for the make up “depict a moving picture of modern day African identity”. The campaign is used by the non-profit organization Keep a Child Alive to raise awareness of our common roots to Africa (genetically all of us are linked to original ancestors that lived in Africa) and the need to support the fight against the AIDS pandemic.

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by Kristen Ashburn

The power of inspiration and purpose … Bloodine by Kristen Ashburn.

I began this project to give a voice to the people behind the statistcs- Kristen Ashburn

The AIDS pandemic continues to devastate sub-Saharan Africa. Two million people died from the disease in 2005 alone. Twelve million children have lost at least one parent. The statistics are staggering.

Kristen Ashburn’s BLOODLINE: AIDS and Family is the story of these men, women and their children. Ashburn’s photographs are heartbreaking (see more here and here). But they also tell us of something more. They remind us of how tenuous our connection is to each other. In doing so, they show that what matters most is the care we give to those in need. (from MediaStorm).


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Gilda Manuel Mate with her children at their home in Mabote, Mozambique.  Gilda is HIV-positive and a spokesperson in the fight against AIDS – Steve Simon

Photojournalist Steve Simon just published a new book, Heroines and Heroes: Hope, HIV, and Africa. The book, is the product of four trips to Africa that Simon has taken since 2002. The photographer is donating all of his royalties to organizations fighting AIDS in Africa, and one of his hopes for the book is that the pictures will motivate readers to make donations themselves. See the images with a narration by the photographer here.

“I didn’t want to ignore the harsh realities of the scourge of AIDS, but at the same time, I wanted to show some of the positive things that were going on in the fight against AIDS. I wanted to show daily life. I wanted to show the beauty of the landscape, and that not everybody is always miserable.”- Steve Simon.

Steve has photographed communities throughout Zambia, Mozambique, Ethiopia and Lesotho, where more than 28,000,000 adults and 1,000,000 children are currently living with HIV. Every day 11,000 more people are infected–at a rate of one person every eight seconds. Simon’s sensitive and gentle portraits capture both the suffering and the astonishing resilience of the people on the front lines of the AIDS pandemic. There is also a limited edition book series that contains a numbered and limited print from the book. There are many reputable organizations fighting the war agains the HIV pandemic. If you wish to donate you may take a look at Mercy Corps or CARE.


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By Brent Stirton (Getty Images)

As a follow up from my last post about Brent Stirton I wanted to link to an article just published at PDNonline decribing Brent’s coverage of HIV around the world, in particular in locations where no public programs to prevent and care for the disease exist. Yesterday, December 1st, was the World AIDS day. The statistics of the AIDS/HIV pandemic are tragic, this is one of the biggest humanitarian crises of our time. There are many ways to contribute to the fight against HIV in the third world. Both Mercy Corps and Care, have campaings to fight the AIDS/HIV epidemics.

“Am I hopeful? I move in and out. I’m chucking my 50 cents into the ring here, that’s what I’m doing. I’d like to stand for something. I’d like to have some values. And this is the clearest domain for me to enact these values.”- Brent Stirton


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