Phoebe and Junior

In February 2019 I worked with the charity AIDS orphan documenting the lives of people in the village of Ahero, in the Nyanza region of Western Kenya. Ahero had been hit hard by the AIDs pandemic, losing all but 8 of the village men to the virus leaving the women to support their families, often while ill themselves, when they died it fell to the surviving grandparents or other family members to pick up the load.

The village was slowly rebuilding, though HIV was still at epidemic levels, with antiretroviral drugs available at the government hospitals the virus wasn’t the death sentence it once was.

Many of the children in the village rely on schools set up by charities such as AIDs Orphan. These schools not only enable education but have feeding programs as many of the children are malnourished and often HIV positive.

Yesterday Alfred, a villager who was my translator at the time, contacted me asking if I was Ok and if I’d been ill with Covid -19. When I asked how he was and the women we had photographed were faring he explained that due to the schools closing and no access to the feeding programs many children are now suffering from malnourishment and women are unable to feed their families.

The following images are of Phoebe and her son Junior who was five years old at the time. Phoebes husband died of AIDs and she supports 3 children on her own, earning around 33 British pence a day for a full days work. When these images were taken Junior was in the school program and recovering from malnourishment – here he was getting ready to go to school, his dream to become an airline pilot – now Pheobe is once again struggling to feed her family.

Argaty Red Kites

Argaty Red Kites, Doune, Scotland

When in Central Scotland I always go and spend time at Lerrocks farm, the home of Argaty Red Kites. I’ve always had a deep interest in conservation and at Argaty they are proving that farming and conservation can live alongside one another. The biodiversity on the farm is a joy to behold with an abundance of wildlife, a growing population of Red Kites, wildflower meadows, dragon fly ponds and red squirrels’ just to name a few. Over the last few years I have enjoyed documenting the changes and progress on the farm. Now open to visitors (though closed due to Covid at the moment) I was delighted one day to get these images of some budding naturalists already taking an interest in conservation.

Argaty Red Kites website