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My Ebola Story

PHOTOS BY SARAH GRILE


Overview: Ebola had an effect on every person living in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. It was an invisible enemy. Yet, many found a way to find hope and persevere through the tribulations the disease caused. Some became activists while others used their skills to help stop the spread of the disease. In June, the UNICEF offices of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone commissioned Namuh to do a portrait series on 21 people in each country.

Goal: The UNICEF offices of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone wanted to work together to create a photo series that would share the experiences of 21 people who were touched by Ebola.

Challenges: Since the trip was scheduled in three different countries, timing was crucial. Although people being photographed were notified in advance by the UNICEF offices, this did not mean that they would show up on time. One person had fallen sick with Malaria so there was not a lot of time for the photo session. We had arrived earlier then the subject, so we were able to pick out a place for the portrait making it easier on her. For both Sierra Leone and Guinea, translation help was always necessary in order to answer questions for brief articles that would accompany the photographs. The UNICEF team worked together with Namuh to make sure this was accomplished.

Result: The photographs along with short text blocks were published successively through Medium, Facebook and Twitter over a 21 day period. A selection of the series was also published online by The Guardian.

About the Client: UNICEF is the agency of the United Nations mandated to advocate for the protection of children’s rights, to help meet their basic needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential.

Link to The Guardian article. 

Project Title: My Ebola Story
Client: UNICEF
Location: Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone
Date: September - October  2015, Published December
Services Provided: Photography, Original Reporting