GoFundMe: Gambia-Victims, and Resisters of a Regime – #Portraits4PositiveChange ©Jason Florio

Portrait of ex-Mile2 prisoner, Ballo Kanteh, the Gambia ©Jason Florio
Ballo Kanteh – an ex-political prisoner, he shows the burns he suffered after melted plastic was dripped onto his skin by Jammeh’s hit-squad, the Junglers. Kanteh spent 18-year detention at the notorious Mile 2 prison – for the first two years, he was held in solitary confinement in a pitch dark cell, which has permanently damaged his eyesight ©Jason Florio

GoFundMe: The Gambia – Victims, and Resister of a Regime  

  • To face the past, victims, and resisters, of the Jammeh regime come forward – #Portraits4PostiveChange

‘In a global political climate where authoritarian rule is on the rise  – where autocratic leaders crush dissent, and opposition, with brutality and little or no regard for human rights – it is essential to keep telling the stories of the victims of such regimes.

Your support will enable us to continue our work, to create an extensive body of portraits of the victims of the 22-year brutal dictatorship of the Yahya Jammeh’s regime, as a tool for positive change and advocacy…’Jason Florio & Helen Jones-Florio 

The wife and son of Harouna Jammeh, who was murdered along with his sister on the orders of his brother, former president Yahya Jammeh ©Jason Florio
The wife and son of Harouna Jammeh, who was murdered along with his sister on the orders of his brother, former president Yahya Jammeh. Harouna’s daughter, Ayeshah Jammeh, has since co-founded the ‘Gambia Centre for Victims of Human Rights Violations‘ – Image ©Jason Florio 

 

Please check out our GoFundMe campaign to find out more and why this is so important… and help spread the word, by sharing on social media. We’ll thank everyone, individually. And, if you donate, we’ll send you a handmade postcard, once we get to the Gambia. 

GoFund Me #Portraits4PostiveChange Gambia

 

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#ThrowBackMonday – Behind the scenes : Jason Florio’s portrait of ‘Samba Fishing’ – River Gambia, West Africa

‘Samba Fishing’, Kuntaur, River Gambia ©Jason Florio 

 

During our time canoeing the length of the River Gambia, on our exploration of the people whose livelihoods depend on the river, we spent each night wild camping on the river bank – whether it be camping on a sandbank in the middle of the river (burning a fire all night long to deter the hippos!), on rocky outcrops miles from the nearest village and, at other times, on the edge of a village, if it was near enough to the river.

Jason Florio photographs Samba, a young fisherman, in Kuntaur, whilst on the River Gambia Expedition. Image © Helen Jones-Florio
Jason Florio photographs Samba, a young fisherman, River Gambia © Helen Jones-Florio.

 

On this particular day, we arrived mid-afternoon into the village of Kuntaur, situated on the banks of the river. We had stayed in the village before, whilst on our 2009 ‘A Short Walk in the Gambian Bush‘. We set up our campsite in the grounds of a small riverbank lodge and, as had become the norm, our arrival instantly attracted hordes of local kids – shouting and screaming, all vying for our attention, fascinated with our tents and equipment – before the caretaker of the lodge shooed them away, “atchayah! atchayah!” (go away, get lost! A Mandinka word Gambians use to scatter mischievous kids and the scores of scavenging bush dogs alike!).

'Any chance of a bit of privacy?' Camping in a the village chiefs compound comes at a price ©Jason Florio
‘Any chance of a bit of privacy?’ Helen – Camping in the village chiefs compound comes at a price ©Jason Florio.

 

As we were about to settle down for a well-deserved cup of tea, having paddled almost 33km that day – a tough, exhausting 10km of it against the tide – we noticed a young boy, out on the river, in a local pirogue that looked far too big for him to handle on his own. We called him over and he paddled towards us with such ease and dexterity, as if he was steering a small rubber dinghy and not a heavy wooden dugout canoe, carved from a tree trunk.

His name was Samba and he said that he was ‘11 or 12 years old‘ (it’s not unusual, in this part of the world, for people not knowing exactly how old they are). He had come straight from school, to pull in his families fishing nets from the river, to see what catch they had that day…‘ Exert/words ©Helen Jones-Florio – read more at ‘River Gambia Expedition – 1044km source-sea African odyssey

'Samba Fishing' River Gambia, fine art photography prints © Jason Florio '
‘Samba Fishing’ fine art photography prints © Jason Florio ‘

 

Jason Florio’s fine art photography prints – available from helenjonesflorio.com

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Youtube: LensCulture interview photographer, Jason Florio about ‘Destination Europe’

“I really hope that these pictures will break down the barriers, and get people to see them as human beings… they are not a threat, they have the same hopes and aspirations as all of us… “Jason Florio 

The European migrant crisis has receded from the public eye but continues to evolve. A veteran photojournalist, Jason Florio, offers us a wider lens on the topic, connecting the Mediterranean to the western reaches of AfricaLensCulture.

Related posts:

LensCulture/Jason Florio.

Refugees rescue in the Aegean Sea

See more  of the above series at floriophoto.com: ‘Destination Europe’

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Stormy Mediterranean Sea – Malta

Stormy Mediterranean Sea, Spinola Bay, Malta ©Jason Florio
Stormy Mediterranean Sea, Spinola Bay, Malta ©Jason Florio

 

Stormy Mediterranean Seas hit Malta

Images © Jason Florio / ©Helen Jones-Florio
Photographer, Jason Florio, photographs Stormy Mediterranean Sea, Spinola Bay, Malta ©Helen Jones-Florio
Stormy Mediterranean Sea, Spinola Bay, Malta ©Helen Jones-Florio

 

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