Friday, November 20, 2015

Refugee from Sectarian Violence, Uttar Pradesh, India, March of 2015

On our return to the refugee camps from two years ago, we were told that most of the camps were now vacant fields. Most of the families had either settled in the area or returned to their homes. While this was of course excellent news, for many their lives had changed very little.

Such was the case with this little girl, and her family. Over two years ago they were forced from their homes by yet another bout of sectarian violence. They had moved to this part of Uttar Pradesh and were provided land in order to begin the recovery process. A few organizations had stepped up and build public latrines and mosques, provided blankets and clothes, and even began the arduous process of documenting their stories. 

Two years later she was still living in the camp. When we arrived she was listening the Koranic lessons with the rest of the children as they gathered under the fabric of a large tent. 

The inhabitants of the camp were familiar with my hosts and allowed me to make portraits of the children. We began with the boys as was customary for our afternoon sessions, and then made portraits of the girls in front of the school. This young girl, in front of the men in her camp, had the courage to get up and stand for her portrait in front of yet another stranger. The determination in her eyes made me pause then, as it does now.

Note: This image was made with a Sony RX100M2.

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