Ja Nou We L/The Way We See It
CHALLANGEPromote women’s voices in the discourse about recovery from the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.
Developing and promoting a photography collection produced by Haitian women that could be seen by a general public audience to raise awareness about women’s experience in Haiti after the earthquake and provide financial support for the continuation of a photography program for women in Haiti.
This public exhibition and associated catalogue features 48 original photographs by Haitian women victims of sexual violence. The goal of the series was to enable Haitian women to share their own views of life from the camps, the insecurity they faced, and ultimately to be able to tell their own stories. The collection and activities to promote it were a collaboration between Digital Democracy, a human rights organization working with Haitian women, a NY based photography agency, ELK Studios, and KOFAVIV, a local Haitian service provider and advocacy network of some 3000 women, all survivors of gender based violence.
Variant Strategies developed the initial partnership with ELK Studios, which provided all printed photographs for free and designed the exhibition catalogue. We also worked with Haitian women of KOFAVIV, a local service provider and advocacy organization, to train select members in basic photography and how to capture their experience in the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti killing over 300,000 people and producing the highest rate of rape in the world at that time. We curated all content for the exhibition catalogue and worked with the leadership of KOFAVIV to write an essay for the exhibition catalogue. VS produced an event at Splashlight Studios that raised over $20,000 for the continuation of KOFAVIV’s photography program and created and managed a team of over 50 volunteers for the event. Finally, VS oversaw all event promotion and press outreach.
The collection and exhibition catalogue were launched at an event at Splashlight Studios, which was attended by over 200 people, raised over $20,000 for the continuation of KOFAVIV’s photography work, and resulted in press to help raise awareness about the realities of Haitian women at a time when much discussion was taking place about how to best respond to the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, which took the lives of over 300,000 people. The catalogue is written in both English and Haitian Creole. (Exhibition catalogue and photo collection available at: http://www.magcloud.com/browse/Issue/187798).