Archive for the ‘Cameras for Asia’ Category

Cameras for Asia: India part 1

The Cameras for Asia program recently visited India, taking the program to three different centres around the country. The first of these was Shishya School in the Dun Valley, a beautiful location with views towards the Himalaya mountains and set in a peaceful village outside Dehra Dun. Two more posts will be published in the coming days on the other two centres.

Shishya School

Shishya School in the Dun valley was started in 1996 by the parents of some of my former Woodstock School students (an international school in Mussoorie about 50km away). They put a “school” sign outside a two bedroom house and parents brought their children. It has expanded since into a lively community of about 650 students. There’s a wonderful sense of family here with committed teachers involved, some who live on campus.


The photography elective students.

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Funding Cameras for Asia

Someone asked me over the weekend why I was fundraising for Cameras for Asia if I was being paid to do it! I was a little dumbstruck initially but then realised perhaps I should clear the air – unfortunately I am not paid to run this program but I love doing it so I’m happy to continue.

Currently the fundraising through honey, calendar and card sales covers some of the costs which can run to $5000/year if I go to all three countries. The program also takes up about two months of my year in which I am unable to work as the program is too time consuming to manage anything else. I don’t get leave pay as a freelancer and running the program isn’t a holiday even though it’s also very enjoyable 🙂

Cameras for Asia students in Nepal.

Cameras for Asia students in Nepal.

I started fundraising two years ago as I realised it would be not be sustainable for me long term if it continued with me delving into my own funds. Fundraising doesn’t come naturally to me but so far it’s been successful enough to keep it all afloat! I do not yet cover my costs each year but in general I am able to cover many on the ground costs and that is a real blessing.

That sometimes means cameras sit in a drawer for a year or more until a piece of equipment comes in (eg. a battery, charger etc) or why I am unable to expand the program despite all your requests and suggestions. But it’s also why I’m so grateful for those that do support the program through these sales.

Fundraising dinner for Cameras for Asia.

Recent fundraising dinner for Cameras for Asia.

To some degree I think opening Cameras for Asia up to funding has also improved the community nature of the program as people feel more connected and involved and own the program too. I hosted a fundraising dinner recently which was a really great way of including people in that journey, the communities this program has touched and the life that goes beyond the sessions I do. It was also great to see people making other positive connections through the projects they are involved in.

In a world in which we are currently asked to be interested in a particular community, cause and event it is heartening people are interested in Cameras for Asia. Taking photographs may not change the life of all the people involved but it does touch them and it encourages, empowers and educates.

And in the meantime yes I am very open donations, ideas and other sources to fund Cameras for Asia. Feel free to get in touch with me about it!


All images are purchasable through the Visited Planet database. Feel free to email Jo at with your comments/thoughts/photo aspirations. See and learn more at

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Cameras for Asia Nepal: Children’s images

From brick workers to bustling markets and celebrations for the Tibetan New Year, the recent Cameras for Asia workshops in Nepal generated a lot of really great images of life in the Kathmandu valley. The images below were taken by children from the Children’s Welfare Centre in Godwari and the Nepal Muscular Dystrophy Foundation.


Monk novices at Swaymbhunath for Losar, Tibetan New Year. Pic: Amrita.

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New products: Visited Planet photographic cards

Visited Planet is pleased to announce the release of 15 new greeting cards.  These are divided between a “world” series featuring Visited Planet images and a “Cameras for Asia” series with images taken by children during workshops. Sales of the latter are divided between Cameras for Asia and the centre where it was taken.

To order a greeting card email and provide:
* Your name and the address to send the cards
* The identifiying number and quantity of cards
* Payment advice (paypal to or email for bank details)
Introductory offer: Free postage in Australia for an order of six cards or more.

Design 2: 9 card “World” series
Card Quality: 4 colour process plus overall matt varnish on 250gsm card.
Finished size: Scored to fold to 175mm x 115mm
Blank inside.
Cost: $2 each
Introductory offer: Free postage in Australia for an order of six cards or more.

2A – Myanmar monks
2B – Black Hmong kids, Vientam
2C – Annapurna, Nepal
one tooth smile
2D – Yogyakarta smile
2E – Sumatran flowers
sunset over a ger
2F – Mongolian sunset
bali kids
2G – Bali kids
dunes with footprints
2H – Australian dunes
2I – Meditation in India

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Cameras for Asia: Nepal

Cameras for Asia ran two recent programs in Nepal. One was to the Children’s Welfare Centre and the other to the Muscular Dystrophy Foundation. Both are places I have visited before and here are excerpts from the recent report I drafted on these workshops:

Children’s Welfare Centre
A welcome return to the nation of high snow capped mountains, butter lamps, burning incense and dahl bhat was the second part of the Cameras for Asia program this year. Two weeks of classes were held in the Kathmandu valley at Godwari with 14 teenagers from the Children’s Welfare Centre ( CWC cares for children who are orphaned, socially oppressed, helpless, or abandoned by their parents and society. They come from all over Nepal but CWC becomes their home and spending time here is like becoming part of a family.

Group photo taken by Sajan in the far top left of the photo. We set the camera up on a timer to take this.

Group photo taken by Sajan in the far top left of the photo. We set the camera up on a timer to take this.

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Visited Planet's documentary and lifestyle photographic projects are designed to aid, equip, empower and educate people around the world.

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