This is the beginning of what I hope to be at least a two-year project. Something that delves into the lives of those who struggle to make ends meet, to find what makes their world mean something. I have spent quite a bit of time photographing and being with friends of mine in Kibera, one of the most ‘famous’ (if you would like to call it that) slums in Africa, situated in Nairobi just 10 minutes from my house. It was filmed in The Constant Gardener and so I’m told apparently each inhabitant has a fair number of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) representing them, however exact figures are hard to come by, typical in Africa.
Walking in Kibera I found that there is on average, rougly speaking, one church every 10th building. Quite a number. And I wondered “who is getting what out of this?”. “Are those that put some much of their pay and their life getting an equivalent back. Is it real? Are they being taken advantage of? What really IS going on here?”.
And so I dug. As I dug I photographed. And as I spent time thus far, I have found that so many of the people that devote their lives to religion, or more specifically ‘Christianity in a few various interpretations/forms’ as I’ve so far photographed, get a great deal from their chosen involvement. Support – emotional, physical, sometime economical, psychological, environmental – is key. My initial questioning has been answered on a number of levels. But Religion is a huge topic and so is Poverty. And both in the context of human nature leaves much to be further questioned and thus explored.
To be continued…..