Photographic training for slum children

In January 2009 Canon India private limited supported SWYAA-India for  conducting a month long photographic workshop with forty slum children of age group 10-14 years, who live and work in slum clusters of west Delhi.  The major activities during the photographic workshop included introduction to photography, type of cameras, and training in handling the digital camera, in door and out door shooting, discussion about the camera angles, perspective and treatment of different subjects. During the outdoor shooting children clicked photographs using power shot digital camera in and around their slums taking photographs of their friends, family, elders, animals, nature, water, life on the railway line and work the parents are engaged.

Through this workshop spearheaded by the Ex-PY Mr. Ravi Chopra, photo journalist the children were given an insight into the world of photography. These photographs were displayed at New Delhi and Mumbai.

Our World One World’ - Photographic exhibition by Slum Children

SWYAA-India was founded for the purpose of continuing the spirit that was fostered through the SWY program. The main activities of the SWYAA include managing post-program social development activities that contribute to society in India, strengthening ties with the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Government of India, Japanese Embassy and the Government of Japan, as well as offering support and organizing training for the future participants of the program. SWYAA-India is a part of the centralized network of AAs from across 62 countries, SWYAA-International and the International Youth Exchange Organization of Japan.
Our World One World project was initiated by Ms. Sonia Leon from SWYAA Costa Rica in 2005.  Later on in 2009 SWYAA-India conceptualized, designed and executed a photographic workshop with slum children and an exhibition titled ‘Our World One World’ which was supported by Canon India Private Limited.

This was in continuation of the efforts towards reaching out to the poor children by Mr. Ravi Chopra, General Secretary of SWYAA-India. As a participant in the SWY6 program he had organized the photo exhibition by rural and slum children from India on board ship Nipponmaru in 1994. He had also conducted a photographic workshop in the ship for bringing out the creativity of the fellow participants at the time.

‘Our World One World’ Photo exhibition in Japan Foundation,
Photographers at Japan Foundation during ‘Our World One World’ Photo
The photographs taken by slum children in the workshop supported by Canon India Private Limited were developed in an exhibition titled ‘Our World One World’for promoting Indo-Japan friendship and to deepen mutual understanding and culturebetween the Japanese and Indian people.

This exhibition was held in association with the Japan Foundation, New Delhi in the Tensin OKAKURA art gallery. The opening ceremony was held in February 2009 by Mr. KensakuKonishi, President and CEO, Canon India Private Limited.  The other guests of honor included Mr. Nao Endo, DirectorGeneral, Japan Foundation, New Delhi, Mr. Kojiro Uchiyama, Director, JapanInformationCenter, Embassy of Japan, New Delhi and Mr. TeruyukiHoshina, Director, Japan Foundation, New Delhi.  The underprivileged children from the slums of Delhi who had taken these photographs were present at the opening ceremony along with 50 children from their area.

The photographic exhibition was taken to Mumbai by Canon India Private Limited and was displayed at the Canon India Image Lounge in April 2009.  A press conference was organized during the opening ceremony and the media was addressed by Mr. KensakuKonishi, President and CEO, Canon India, Mr. AlokBharadwaj, Vice President, Canon India  in the presence of four slum children/photographers, representatives of SWYAA-India, media persons and special invitees. The guests of honor included Mr.TeiichiTorikai, Counsel, Consulate General of Japan, and Mumbai who appreciated the efforts of SWYAA-India very much. On behalf of SWYAA-India and the underprivileged children, Mr. Ravi Chopra, General Secretary presented photographs to both Mr. Konishi and Mr. Torikai.

Speaking on this occasion Mr. KensakuKonishi said that by supporting SWYAA-India they were able to reach out to the underprivileged sections of the society living in the urban slums. These children, though small in age and size were as good as professional photographers as their images had a perspective from a lower angle and the subjects were close to their hearts.  The resulting images were an amazing display of colours and content which was straight from the hearts of the photographers.