August 27, 2019

Stills with #StepForSafety - with Elani, The LuQuLuQu Tribe, and UNHCR

Portraiture, With a cause

When I received the call asking whether I'd be game for this shoot, it was a no brainer for me.

"Absolutely. Just let me know when you're all available, and I'll make it work."

As I was prepping for this shoot, I of course went right to The LuQuLuQu Tribe website - I wanted to see in detail what it's all about. And there, the true magnitude of this movement hit me.

It's not simply about donations. It's not simply about providing foodstuff and living spaces for refugees.

Allow me to pause at that word for a moment: "Refugees."

With everything happening in the world today, and with the number of times we're exposed to that word, it's very easy to forget what it truly represents: That these are individuals and families that have been forced to uproot their lives, and leave the place they call home - not because they want to, but because they have to. Picture that, for a moment. Picture having to abandon everything you know and love, getting torn from friends and family, and having to start afresh. Actually, not knowing whether you'll even get the chance to start afresh. Imagine leaving your life as it is right now, and having to rebuild from scratch.

It's an agonising thought.

So in going through what #DoItLuQuLuQu is all about, the magnitude of what it truly represents was astounding.

A lifeline.

An opportunity to at least dare to dream again, as every single one of us is wont to do... the chance to revive those desires, those hopes, those ambitions that had to be shelved for a while.

And hearing Esther Nyakong, for instance, express her desire to be a neurosurgeon was a crystallising moment for me.

So when the call came to confirm my availability, it was an unequivocal "Yes".

Which brings me to the point of this shoot (and this post):

Image via unhcr.org

In different cities across Africa, the 8th of September has been designated for a walk, dubbed (well, you probably know its name based on the title of this post) "Step For Safety" - in Nairobi, happening from and at the KICC.

It's all with a simple yet powerful idea:

Celebrating the resilience of individuals and families forced to flee their homes - and, perhaps, each of us doing our own little part in creating a reality in which at least one more person finds it possible to, yet again, embrace their hopes.

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So, shall we see you there? I sure hope so!

Register via M-PESA: Paybill - 329378, Account - Step for Safety, Amount - Kes 1500 (the adult humans) / Kes 700 (the little ones).

Or register online: http://unh.cr/5d3e9dc58