I feel it is really hard to keep up with this blog. I would love to write my thoughts every week or even every day, but then I always have other priorities.
Right now my life is very stressful. At the moment I work almost every day until midnight. I am working on my final project for my Master at the London College of Communication. At the same time, my work as the president of my foundation “Viv Timoun” is much more than I had believed it would be. I just renewed my whole website, which also was a lot of work. I shot a couple of weddings and had commercial assignments in the meantime. Everything is a lot of fun, but right now it’s just too much.
I have been in Haiti in June-July and to Benin in August. Both awesome trips! I will go to Hamburg next week, to London the week after and to Bali on the 13th of October. In Bali I will finally take some rest, try to learn how to surf and just have normal holidays (of course with my camera ). But this time I don’t have a project in mind - I will just photograph whatever is beautiful!
For those who understand German have read my last post about the situation in Haiti. It is really depressing. Not much has been done, storms and rain make it almost impossible to live in tents. But it seems like the Haitian people have to stay in tents for years. There is a lot of violence in the tent-cities, a lot of rape and shootings. People are getting aggressive, they don’t want to live in such horrible situations anymore. I really hope the elections in November will change something…
Benin is a lot like Haiti. I call it: Haiti light. It is poor, but people still have the basic needs to live. It is chaotic, but you can still find some quite corners. It is much more relaxed and not stressful, as Haiti (or better Port-au-Prince) is. And it has the voodoo like Haiti has.
For those who don’t know: The Haitian people have been imported to Haiti as slaves many hundred years ago - many of them came from Benin or the surrounding countries.
“Viv Timoun” also supports projects in Benin. A friend of mine, Max Küchenberg, has started a project of rural development there 2 years ago, which is now integrated into our foundation. The project is based on a PhD-thesis in which our Beninese partner, Luc H. Dossa PhD, researched the breeding of the Beninese goat and its impact on the farmer’s quality of live. “Viv Timoun” has built a farm to breed strong, reproducible goats and grow vegetables at the same time.
Furthermore “Viv Timoun” also deals with ‘animal loans`. A couple of goats, pigs, sheep or chicken are donated to a family, which will help them to strengthen their income. The following year they will give back the first descendants of these animals and “Viv Timoun” will give them to another family. This project aims to the creation of a circle of sustainable help.
If you want to support Viv Timoun, here are the details:
IBAN: BE78 7554 7338 2786
Bancaccountholder: Viv Timoun
Banc: Axa Eynatten, Belgien
If you understand German and wish for more infos, please visit: www.vivtimoun.org (sorry, the English translation will appear very soon).
And at the end I want to show you some pictures I found today, that I never really looked at before.
Voodoo in Haiti from 2009: