Ambassador: Bonnie Chiu , Hong Kong SAR China
Bonnie founded Lensational in 2013. It is led by young people from across the world, united by a desire to create social change. Women whose voices are rarely, if ever, heard, from domestic helpers in Hong Kong to children of sex workers in Pakistan, are taking photos thanks to Lensational’s photography training.
Through photography, marginalised women and girls are able to create images that challenge gender stereotypes, in particular in developing countries, and to define what gender means to them. Lensational makes sure their authentic stories are heard by sharing them online, by hosting exhibitions and by generating media coverage estimated to have reached over 10,000 people.
The workshop participants are taught to express themselves through photography. The aim is to emotionally and economically empower the women: students receive 50% of the revenue from their photographs which are sold through Lensational’s online platform and partner agencies. The women can also pursue freelance photography opportunities.
To date 604 women have been trained by volunteers, 130 women have sold their photographs and so are now earning a living through photography as well as telling their stories to a worldwide audience, and although the project is still in development there are 37 freelance photographers.