Weekly Photo Challenge: Change

1 Amputee Sierra Leone

The Peace Project, an international social movement that I work with in Sierra Leone, changed this man’s life by giving him a pair of crutches.

I took this photograph in May 2012 during one of The Peace Project’s crutch distribution efforts in Sierra Leone, West Africa.


Pademba Road

With your innate superiority you carve your God into a mountain. My God is carved on sand and will never know security.

If I eat well tonight you will not starve.

In June of this year I met a community of polio survivors who live on Pademba Road in Freetown, Sierra Leone. The majority of the men I interviewed are in urgent need of crutches and wheelchairs.

As you will see from this short video; for these polio survivors, the only way they can have mobility is to crawl along the ground.

Where is Peace?

English: A school in Koindu damaged during the...
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Koidu, Sierra Leone. The main road through the...
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An illustration of liberated slaves arriving i...
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English: Second graders in a primary school af...
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Sierra Leone 555-9578 2
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Sierra Leone_Kissy Town 2
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English: A class in a newly rebuilt secondary ...
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English: Alluvial diamond miners in Kono Distr...
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A radio listener in rural Kailahun Sierra Leone.
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English: Street in Kenema, Sierra Leone.
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Satellite image of Sierra Leone
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English: Map of Sierra Leone Español: Mapa de ...
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English: The opening of Kailahun Government Ho...
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Freetown (Sierra Leona)
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Sierra  Leone  1982
Image by Brian Harrington Spier via Flickr
Sierra Leone-9600
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Sierra Leone-9567
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I struggled to make sense of the world in which I lived until I went to Sierra Leone to work for peace.

Everything is broken

In Sierra Leone
everything is broken
in pieces strewn apart.

My ancestors’ medals for slavery
that were pinned to their chests
are now pinned to the water.

The connection to my African
language is broken;

and when English is spoken here,
the English is broken.

Today in Freetown it’s aching with rain.
I’m outside the National rehab center.
I’m filming a Peace Wall.
I’m waiting for my sister to finish up her meeting
with the Director of rehab.

In the ether her words comingle
bare her soul like an abstract painting

I wish I had the perfect umbrella for her,
but I don’t.

In Sierra Leone we’re all in the waiting room.

I make films to gather time,
to witness the unsayable.

This time around…

Sierra Leone will not cleave at the spine,
nor splinter into disquietude.

She has been promised peace.
A clean sheet.