Youth Photo Reflect (2006-07) was a PhotoVoice project that worked with young people affected and infected by HIV / Aids in Orange Farm, a vast informal settlement 60km south of Johannesburg, South Africa. At the time, Orange Farm was the most isolated, least integrated region of Johannesburg. With over 1m people and an estimated 70% unemployment rate, the majority of the population either had no income or lived below the breadline. There was little to do and crime (including rape) and substance abuse levels were high. Such an environment provides fertile ground for the spread of HIV with people knowingly risking their lives through unsafe sexual practices. This project provided an innovative opportunity for young people themselves to challenge this phenomenon and to look beyond the traditional education programmes.
Run in partnership with Vukuzenzele Reflect Community Organisation (VRCO), the project involved a series of digital photography and storytelling workshops for young people between the ages of 12-18 who have been affected by HIV/AIDS. It culminated in local, national and international exhibitions and screenings.
Digital story: My Angel Sister by Gugu
Digital story: You Are Not Great Until You Make Someone Great by Sylvia