From the Field

2022 life frames: Storytelling from World Vision photographers

A girl wearing a headband with colorful ornaments hanging from it smiles.

World Vision photographers capture stories of children and their families to inspire us to action and compassion. They capture those intimate moments that illuminate God’s grace and faithfulness as we follow Jesus’ example to show unconditional love to the poor and oppressed.

Discover what’s it like behind the scenes during some of these moments, published biannually in this year’s issues of World Vision magazine.

The girls cross their arms smiling and wear bright pink dresses with colorful ornaments hanging from headbands.
Ten-year-old sponsored child Varsha, left, enjoys a moment with her friends while practicing a traditional dance for a village event in India. (©2022 World Vision/photo by Luke Aslaksan)

Carefree joy in India

Written and photographed by Luke Aslaksan, World Vision India program manager

Canon 5D Mark III

35mm lens, 1/200 at f/6.3, ISO 100

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India is known for its diverse culture. For celebrations, women and girls dress up in colorful traditional attire, which is the most interesting element in all Indian events. I went to the community of Dhar and was lucky to meet 10-year-old sponsored child Varsha (left) and her friends Shivkanya, 11 (center), and Gareema, 11 (right), as they were practicing a cultural dance in their traditional costumes for a village function. I sat down to watch. Their smiles enhanced the beauty of their outfits, and their laughter highlighted their confidence.

Their innocent giggles showed how happy children are when they have their freedom. These girls attend school together, but Dhar is a community where many girls drop out of school to be married. The community did not realize the serious harm that child marriage does until World Vision started working here. In partnership with the government, World Vision is working hard through various community activities to help parents and leaders prevent child marriage and keep their girls and boys in school.

How great it will be when every child around the world wears this same smile and shares this same laughter. That reminded me of my responsibility in supporting this as a program manager. My contribution might be the size of a drop in the ocean, but every drop matters.

 

Six smiling children in Myanmar pose for a photo on an old green truck.
Children pose for a photo on an old farming truck in Myanmar during a World Vision birthday party for children. (©2021 World Vision/photo by Saw Moo Kale)

Reflecting with gratitude

Written and photographed by Saw Moo Kale, World Vision Myanmar communications staff member

Canon R

70-200mm lens at 145mm, 1/125 at f/5.6, ISO 100

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Finally, as COVID-19 and conflict restrictions have eased in her community in Myanmar, 11-year-old Khaing (in pink, second from right) is able to attend a birthday party for sponsored children.

She joins other happy children scrambling on an old farming truck parked nearby, content after a delicious meal and fun games. They’re modeling their new World Vision hats. During COVID-19 restrictions children had to stay home, so this party is an especially joyful time for them, a time to heal. The virus has been devastating here. I lost my own mother to it.

My favorite verse is Matthew 19:14, where Jesus says, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Whenever I photograph, the first thing that comes to mind is that I thank God I can work with children in these challenging times. No matter how difficult it may be around them, children are able to forget sadness and troubles for a while and remind us adults that we can create happiness and fun for them.

I look through my viewfinder and pray that God will allow me to capture the emotions I see, to create beautiful images of children. I pray with the children, too, before I photograph.

Parents love to see the photos of their children, to see their happy faces. They are especially proud that their children are involved in these programs. I also want to share fun pictures with our supporters, to show them we are doing our best.

Saw Moo Kale lives in a community served by World Vision.


Read more stories from World Vision photographers in our life frames series.

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