I signed up to travel to India with SalaamGarage without knowing quite what to expect. IT was the first overseas trip of my adult life (if you don’t count the weeklong drinking binge in Scotland after my senior year of high school).
Step one on the path to independence-identity.
Udayan is a home that will always be a place of constant consistent love and acceptance no matter the circumstances. Isn’t that what we all long for and need more than anything?
The more open and willing I am to fully immerse in the new, the more I am gifted with the reminder that, at the bottom of things, I am everything and everywhere. The illusion of separation is busted. Freedom is found.
Vatsalya’s mobile van goes out with its team and parks in a slum location. Street children gather to paint, play sports, and do writing exercises.
Vatsalya helps identify the children’s strong suits and provides practical job training and job placement.
Full speed ahead, we’ve got an appointment with the king! Notice how no one on the street acts like there is anything unusual going on.
This video is not sped up!
Santosh and Linda dancing from Conrad on Vimeo. It was a treat for us to watch Santosh dance in her family home, and the song totally rocks.
Camel riding to the farms, on a hot day through the desert near Pushkar.
Traffic in Jaipur, India. The sidewalk shots that zoom by are actually very interesting if you pause and view them frame-by-frame. Video shot by Conrad Chavez.
Our first encounter with the highways of India.
India has more inspiring stories than could ever be told. Despire all the trouble, the hardship, the poverty, the Indian people seem eternally optimistic. Their optimism is not without good cause, thanks to organizations like Vatsalya, and the unwaveringly devoted, often self-sacrificing people who’ve committed themselves to the greater good.
I traveled to India to photograph Vatsalya’s mobile van project, Samvedna (Karune). Once on the ground, I met the broken but lucky few street children of Jaipur that have made it to Udayan.
I was touched by Jaipur’s street children learning and living at Udayan school. Udayan literally means, “rising and moving ahead.”
Todd Gehman: I love the term “sex workers.” To me it acknowledges the professionalism of this kind of work. At the Vatsalya sex workers clinic in Amjer, women are tested for HIV/AIDS and various other STDs, and receive counseling, education and treatment. The clinic is also a community where children can be with their mothers while [...]
This is a great week. Blurb and SalaamGarage began an official partnership. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Blurb, the company has revolutionized the way people can self-publish books of their work be it photographs, illustrations, words, etc. Let me back up. Our India09 travelers self published a book “India as witnessed by 10 citizen journalists” using Blurb. They rounded up photos and some [...]
We bought a new water buffalo (not a cow really) for Udayan home for children! The SalaamGarage India team that visited Vatsalya.org this past September are in high gear working on their stories, building a book, building multimedia. To inspire us further, we found out today that Vatsalya bought a new, much needed water buffalo [...]
On the SalaamGarage trip to India in September 2009, Lisa was moved like I rarely ever see. Everyone who travels with SalaamGarage gets to choose the story they are going to tell but for Lisa, it was she who was chosen. Lisa Field-Elliot and Eduardo Sciammarella, 2 of the 10 participants on the India project, [...]
Eduardo Sciammarella, CEO of Los Angeles based Protohaus, joined the SalaamGarage India 2009 team to help make a difference for disadvantaged women and children. We asked Eduardo what stood out as he worked on his humanitarian stories in a rural village called Shampura outside Jaipur where NGO Vatsalya works. Eduardo interviewing Santosh with the help [...]
This past week the SalaamGarage team of storytellers for India 2009 have been hard at work building stories, interviewing, recording, observing and participating in so many of Vatsalya’s great projects around Jaipur, India. Here are a few flip videos I recorded at Udayan home for children and Anoothi shop run by Vatsalya.org
We get asked all the time “what is an NGO?” Its a common question. We hope soon it will be a household word and that everyone will know that NGO means non-gonvernment organization, a non-profit. SalaamGarage is bringing a group of incredibly talented, smart, and caring people to Rajasthan, India to help a small NGO [...]
I am quite hungry at work today. I really want something sweet. I advise against looking at fried sweet things photos when you really really want some. (only 39 days to go till SalaamGarage’s humanitarian media team arrives is in Rajasthan!) Jaipur Delhi Pushkar Udaipur- some vegetable relief…
This link is pretty fun. EARTHTV.com for Udapur’s Lake Pichola is a live camera pan across part of the lake and shows if the lake has water. The music is distracting (bad) but the live camera panning across Udaipur is really cool. When the camera isn’t working the comments are helpful. The site gives the [...]
Dargah of Sufi saint Moinuddin Chishti in Ajmer is one of the most important sufi shrines in the world. We are thrilled we will get to stop here, an easy and important stop on our way to Pushkar from Jaipur in a little over a month. photo by soham_pablo on Flickr.