Day One with the students in Overcome Heights

Day one with the class was daunting to say the least, but I need not have worried

They were engaged, involved and questioning

Out of the class of 12 only 6 had taken a photo before in their lives

Think of that, just for a moment.

Some 16 years after the end of Apartheid ,South Africa is still a land of great contrasts, with the gap between the haves and the have nots seemingly as great as ever

I will never forget the moment when they held the camera’s for the first time. 6 Canon 400D’s donated by a reader of this blog, which will remain here when I leave, under the stewardship of ‘True North’

It was a very moving moment to see the joy and excitement on the faces of youths who simply have never had an opportunity to express themselves in such a way before

The plan is that these youths and others will continue to document their community long after I have gone

Normally I start a class with getting everyone to set their camera’s on manual to get an understanding of the way a camera works.

I ran through some of the basics but it soon became clear that there was a real imperative to get them out taking pictures as soon as possible

What to expect? I really did not know

Quite frankly I was amazed with what they came back with in just under 2 hours, but I will let you and the wider world be the judge of that, and DO remember some of these kids have never held a camera in their lives before….

So what will today bring? Who knows? But it will be a special day when they get to see their work on my laptop today. There will be more pictures too