Helping South Sudan with Digital Photography
(Press release): Every Person Has A Story, or EPHAS, a Boston-based organization bringing under served communities the power to tell their stories through digital photography, has announced their newest program in the newest country in the world: South Sudan.
The EPHAS mission is to create powerful connections around the world through digital photography and the internet. In 22 locations across eight countries, including Cambodia, Haiti, Rwanda and the United States, EPHAS runs full-time photography clinics inside schools and other local organizations, providing students with equipment and instruction that allows them to do something many around the world take for granted: to snap a photo that tells a story of their daily lives, and upload it to the internet for thousands to see.
“Since we started in 2010 over 2,000 students have participated in our programs,” says Ryan Ansin, EPHAS’s Executive Director, “and they have captured some extraordinary images” – including the political riots in Haiti in early 2011, Hurricane Rita flooding a mountain town in 2009. EPHAS brought real-time images to the internet, via their blog and on twitter and facebook, of a village of 250,000 in Rwanda getting clean water for the first time, and of child-amputees in Cambodia visiting the temples of Angor Wat.
In South Sudan, EPHAS has partnered with Emmanuel Jal, a renowned recording artist, peace activist, and former South Sudanese child soldier. Jal’s organization, GUA-Africa, built the Emma McCune Academy, a primary and secondary school in Leer, South Sudan, where EPHAS will donate equipment and implement the program.
As a special extension of the EPHAS program and GUA infrastructure, EPHAS board members and technology entrepreneurs Hunter Simpson and Alex Magnin will teach a business and entrepreneurship curriculum to the students in Leer. The curriculum was developed and donated by The BizWorld Foundation, a non-profit founded by famed venture capitalist Tim Draper. BizWorld provides a hands-on experience of entrepreneurship, to help students develop critical thinking, leadership, and financial and business-fluency.
South Sudan presents a wealth of opportunity to go along with its significant challenges. By helping South Sudanese stories be told, EPHAS hopes to create awareness that inspires people around the globe to do their part to realize those opportunities, and mitigate the challenges. A way to start would be following EPHAS on the web, twitter, and facebook to see images from students in the newest country in the world. And most importantly, you can help students in South Sudan by donating directly at ephas.org.