As you can imagine, taking photos for the largest humanitarian organization fighting hunger has sent WFP’s photo editor of 12 years, Rein Skullerud, all over the world to some pretty hard-hit places.
A recent trip to drought-hit Niger to capture the story of the region’s hunger crisis and how WFP is working with communities to help them get through it moved him to do something he’s never done before: tell you the story behind his snapshots.
His photos are timely. This week, global leaders are gathering at Rio+20 in Brazil to discuss how to build a cleaner, greener and more prosperous world. Rein’s photos provide the backdrop to their discussions because they capture what sustainability looks like at work in communities. This is the world they’ll be talking about, the world we live in where 9 million people in the Sahel alone are going hungry.
In a world where one in seven people go to bed hungry every night, we know that hunger isn’t just about drought. Food security, in our view, is the critical missing piece to the development puzzle. A sustainable future and healthier world must begin with solving hunger and poverty. Only by addressing these can other development goals relating to health and education be realized.
Rein’s photos tell the stories that really grabbed his heart. They’re of people empowered to strengthen their communities through WFP programs, mothers who get the energy they need to build new water sources and children with the nourishment to learn. You’ll see small-scale farmers learning how to make their soil more resilient and crops more nutritious. And amidst it all, a reminder: these are people getting through the drought and becoming stronger to face the next one.
The stories he shares are powerful reminders of resiliency at work and the world we’re helping build by solving hunger.