#Article (Archive)

US philanthropists visits project sites

Apr 27, 2010, 1:36 PM

The Director and founder of Gambia Health Education Liaison Project (GambiaHELP), Shelby Tarutis, alongside Marc Shor, Photographer (barndoorproductions.com) and Kevin Sharp, Photographer (www.sharpphotography.com) have had a two week visit to the rural areas in The Gambia.

The photographers have joined her to document GambiaHELP projects and to bring to the United States (Seattle), the sights and life of rural children.

The GambiaHelp was established in 1980 as a non-profit organisation that aims to alleviate poverty and support women and children with a focus on vulnerable children. The organisation for the past 11 years has donated a container of books, computers, bicycles and educational supplies to Gambians.

According to the Director, the trek which took place from 11th -24th March covered five villages, namely Fulanbantang, Dankunku, Janjangbureh, Bansang and Bureng. Activities included the distribution of 50 instamatic cameras to children at Dankunku Basic Cycle School with the aim of empowering and teaching them on how to write descriptive stories about their photographs in order to share their views of the world.

In addition, the team also came to witness the grand opening of a women’s skill centre in the village, observe women making tie & dye skirts and blankets, and saw how small enterprises can support a village community. They also visited a poultry farm, cereal milling business, a cereal bank and school gardens.

The two professional photographers, who have more than 20 years of experience, documented all of these activities. Kevin Sharp has worked as a photographer with children in the village of Mbassis in Senegal and has exhibited photographs in Seattle and also has a gallery from that trip on sharpphotography.com. Marc Shor has had several individual shows in Seattle, WA, and has also exhibited in group show with a focus on international subjects.

The two weeks trip was conducted with the support of Cherno Gaye, Managing Director, Essa Camara, Assistant Operations Manager - Classified Print and his staff at the Gambia Printing and Publishing Corporation.