In a country like Nepal that has endured long-term political hardships, there’s nothing more devastating than for the 2015 earthquakes to rock the nation. As the country continues to struggle with the effects of the natural disasters, climate change and political instability, renewable energy is providing both light and hope for a nation of people renowned for their resilience.
In the early years, there was much work to be done in this fledgling democracy. One diminutive lady was at the centre of the much-needed social reform, ensuring that the welfare of the island’s women and children was thrust to the very top of the agenda – her name was Che Zahara binte Noor Mohamed.
The landmines left over from Cambodia's war are being sniffed out and removed by a task force of... trained rats?
As the sun sets, a vanguard of boys enters the ceremonial grounds, shouldering large V-shaped objects covered in colourful plastic streamers and bells. They bounce up and down to set a beat while seated onlookers look towards the line of approaching Saisiyat tribespeople. As they begin to flood into the grounds, rocking their bodies as they step in time with the jangling bells, their haunting singing – energetic, but mournful – rises in volume.
Wakhan Corridor, Afghanistan – As the teacher led his ninth-grade students through a Dari lesson one summer morning, everyone in the classroom heard and felt the rumbling. The students and teacher looked up, then out of the windows facing the Hindu Kush mountains behind DeGhulaman High School. Earthquake? Not exactly.
The Hindu devotee’s hands are pressed together. His palms touch, close to his chest, and his fingers point upwards. His brightly-coloured turban is in stark contrast to his thick white beard. “Namaste,” he says with a slight bow. Literally translated, the word means “I bow to the divine in you.” A respectful greeting, namaste, or namaskar, combined with the wordless hand gesture, conveys the same meaning of acknowledgement for a loved one, a guest or a stranger, regardless of the speaker’s language, culture or religion.
In many countries, particularly in the developed world, climate change as a result of man-made pollution exists as little more than a frightening prospect, even while widely acknowledged as an accepted fact, empirically proven by modern science. But in Tondo, northwest of the city of Manila in the Philippines, climate change and rampant pollution are realities that residents live with every day.
As with all Palestinians in what is often described as the world’s largest open-air prison, life for the women of the Gaza Strip is choked with adversity. Fenced by land and bound by sea, the enclave grates under the humanitarian impact of military conflict, embargo and political isolation. But for journalist and photographer Lara Abu Ramadan, this life of adversity is mostly met with a high spirit and dignity.