This was taken during our 1st annual Camp GLOW in Rwanda. GLOW (Girls Leading Our World) is a leadership, health education and empowerment camp for young women.
PCV Kate Hulbert and I had an ambitious plan to create the next Annie Leibovitz. We had a week of 2 hour sessions on using photography as a tool for personal expression. We were frustrated by day 2, thinking that all they wanted were pictures of themselves standing or sitting next to a tree. Every person picking up a camera for the first time goes through this phase, amazed by the permanence and simple beauty of a moment in time. We were foolish to think that these young women would be any different.
Midway through the week, it was clear that they had exhausted the creative limits of the tree. Gradually some of the earlier lessons began to seep into their pictures. How can one express strength with a single photograph? Love? Contrition? They were exploring photography in earnest and it was amazing to see.
I now see this cycle of eagerness, frustration and acceptance followed by personal breakthroughs as a (heavy handed) allusion to the experience of passionate PCVs and those they try to help all over the world.
This photo was taken by Zam Zam, a camper from Nyamirambo, Rwanda.