Documentary Photography

Documentary photography is a vital tool to communicate an injustice, a social problem, or other current issues.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Sexual Violence

Sexual Violence -in War or Peace- is a Crime.

Rape committed during war is often systematic and intended to terrorize the population, break up families, destroy communities, and, in some instances, change the ethnic makeup of the next generation. Sometimes it is also used to render women from the targeted community, incapable of bearing more children.

Sexual violence during war creates multi-fold challenges for survivors:

* The shame and stigma of public rape can often force a rape survivor and her family to flee their community, leaving behind land, property, and resources. This often leaves women poorer and more vulnerable to further abuse and in need of financial assistance to get back on their feet.
* These women and their families also face lasting psychological trauma. War typically destroys the very infrastructure needed to help these women, leaving few properly trained counselors and psychologists. Health centers lack resources and skilled personnel.
* They have medical needs, especially for reconstructive surgeries, and may need HIV/AIDS treatment.
* These women want JUSTICE - legal ACTION to ensure that the attackers are caught and punished.

The Congo is the rape capital of the world.  Everyday women are raped, by Interhamwe, and other milita groups, even the Congolese soldiers. Aren't they suppose to be protecting the women?  This is a horrific situation.  I have heard many stories from women, that actually turned my stomach and got me sick.  I didn't think I was going to hear such inhumane, stories of horror.  These are real people and their courage and strength to tell them is astounding.  They want the world to know what has happened to them and their families, and how their rapes have changed their lives.  I videoed many women and their stories and will bring it back to the USA and be their voice, so you can hear it from them to.  These 3 images are 3 of the women I interviewed. I have interviewed 9 women, so far.

2 comments:

  1. Powerful post. What a sad story. Keep up the good work of getting the word out. They have a good advocate and voice in you.

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  2. I Just Nominated your blog for the Kreativ Blogger Award
    http://denisevasquez.blogspot.com/2010/03/kreativ-blogger-award-pay-it-forward.html

    ReplyDelete