My 7 months with the Red Cross family: Greece

Lesvos, Greece
I travelled to many places with the IFRC as Regional Community Engagement Delegate (so, coordinating the way the red cross interacts with, informs, and collects feedback from refugees – across Europe) – but I definitely spent the most of my time visiting refugee camps in Greece. I started off my contract by immediately being deployed to the island Lesvos – where most people were arriving at the time. I also went several times to the north of Greece, to Idomeni and different locations around Thessaloniki and Athens. The job was difficult and very demanding, but also very rewarding – I had the opportunity to meet with amazing refugee volunteers, and the Greek people was extraordinarily hospitable and helpful in this very difficult situation.

And then, as a great bonus, there were all the colleagues and staff from partner organisations that I got to work closely with – engaged, passionate and hard-working people. Work-wise, it was both the most demanding and inspiring assignment I’ve had so far, with true solidarity at its core.

IMG_20160217_010946
Lesvos, Greece
Lesvos, Greece
Lesvos, Greece
Lesvos, Greece
Lesvos, Greece
Lesvos, Greece
Lesvos, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Nea Kavala Refugee Camp
Nea Kavala Refugee Camp
Idomeni, Greece
Idomeni, Greece
Nea Kavala Refugee camp
Nea Kavala Refugee camp
Nea Kavala Refugee camp
Nea Kavala Refugee camp
Nea Kavala Refugee camp
Nea Kavala Refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
Cherso refugee camp
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MINOX 35 ML

My 7 months with the Red Cross family: Other missions

Macedonia

I didn’t get photos of all the workshops, missions and travels I did with the IFRC, but here are some of them. I had the opportunity to visit some of the Red Crescent community centres in Turkey’s Ankara, Konya and Istanbul, I got to visit different camps in Macedonia, I did presentations in Sofia, Budapest, and Vienna, I participated in the Regional Disaster Response Team training in Bulgaria, and I took part in a global workshop to define the first Red Cross Red Crescent movement guide for community engagement and accountability. An intense learning period, definitely.

Macedonia
Macedonia
Ankara, Turkey
Ankara, TurkeyKonya, Turkey
Konya, TurkeyKonya, Turkey
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10 Days in Honduras – Diving deep into context

In November, I was contacted by UNICEF Honduras to support the office with their visual communication and fundraising by producing a book with stories and photos from several of their initiatives around the country. My boss here in Belize agreed to let me go for a week, and I went for a 10 day – Friday to Sunday – deep-dive field mission.

I spent the days photographing and listening to people, which as you know are my two favourite things in the world. It was an amazing trip – and a very exhausting one – not only because of the overload of new information, long hours and distances travelled by car, but mainly because of the people I met and the stories they shared with me. Life in Honduras definitely has its challenges, many of them related to the widespread violence, poverty and lack of job opportunities – taking all of that in, trying to understand, listening, asking questions, taking notes, photographing.. was intense. Interviewing people about their personal experiences is not easy, you have to keep your empathy chip on while disconnecting emotionally – and just managing that is draining. It’s only later, when out of context, that the mind realizes the intensity of the experiences lived and the emotions kick in again. Combine that with the Paris attacks and globally increased racist sentiment that happened the same week and an overall gloomy time here. It was a particularly hard week, but nevertheless rich in new knowledge and refreshed willingness to continue doing what I do. The importance of giving a voice to these adolescents is higher than anything else, and it was as always very inspiring to get a glimpse of their dedication and young passionate minds. I love this job.

I will share the publication and the stories in January. Until then, here’s a small view of how things went down.

And yes, the local media got to me, haven’t found that clip though. haha

Honduras Field TripHonduras Field Trip

Honduras Field Trip

Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip

Honduras Field TripHonduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip

Honduras Field TripHonduras Field Trip

Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field TripHonduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field TripHonduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip
Honduras Field Trip

UNICEF Belize Documentary: Beat a Pan, Not a Man

It is a great pleasure to share with you all the freshly produced short documentary, Beat a Pan, Not a Man that I have worked on for UNICEF Belize together with the much talented producer Brent Toombs.

The production is a journey through emotions and an insight into the lives of young people living in the very violent parts of Belize City – and shows us how a UNICEF Belize supported initiative, implemented by local partners Restore Belize and the National Institute of Culture and History, helps these children get out of their violent environments and instead focus on learning how to play music and having fun.

The video producer prepared a cool 1 minute trailer for the video, and then we released the full length 10 minute documentary last Friday. Enjoy!


UN Day in Belize – Celebration and accidental fail

UN Day Belize

Last week we celebrated the UN Day here in Belize, along with the rest of the world. I supported in planning the event and supervising the two video productions – one to commemorate the 70 years of the UN in Belize, and the other to document the event in itself.

It was great fun, but I was accidentally caught on camera while taking a photo and holding my sunglasses – you’ll see it below. An otherwise cool image, I had to ask the producers to cut it out due to the quite obvious accidental super-fail. Haha!

UN Day Belize

UN Day Belize

UN Day Belize

UN Day Belize

UN Day Belize - Ignite LTD

UN Day Belize

UN Day Belize

UN Day Belize

UN Day Belize - Ignite LTD

UN Day Belize Video Screenshot