In the summer of 2009 a group of young Iraqis and Palestinians who had fled to Jordan worked alongside Jordanians at a photo camp, exploring stories of displacement and resettlement. We present a selection of their work and their thoughts about the images.
The camp was run by National Geographic and International Medical Corps in Jordan, and the participants were tutored by photographers Reza and Ed Kashi. Shams: "I took this picture because I felt the kid’s innocence in it and I really loved the picture."
Zahraa: "I remember my first day at school in Jordan, where my mother took me. Life was very nice. It remained like that for a week. After that, I was able to go to school without fear and knew that life would keep going on."
Basma: "My dream is to go back to Iraq because it is my country, and I do not have an uncle or aunt, and no cousins here. I remember when the war started. My mother and I were sitting on the porch, I had final exams, and a man got killed in front of me."
Fatma: "I remember that my happiest days were with my father before he died, and I remember that when I was little my father used to play with me and my sisters. I remember the war in Iraq, and I remember seeing things burning."
Hamam: "I noticed a kid lying behind a column at the market. A woman was beside him day-dreaming, and that little kid beside her was sleeping, feeling safe and comfortable. This scene affected me very much, I got really sad. I will never forget this."
Hawra’a: "Horses are the most beautiful animals to me. I took this picture because it represents Arabic traditions. And you can see the reflection of the light on the horse’s hair."
Hazem: "I remember that when I was little I used to have pictures taken of me. My hope is to make things better around me."
Ihab: "I dream of travelling around the world and taking pictures of the most beautiful places so that I will have them in my memory when I grow up."
Mohammad: "I like this picture because it shows our history and tradition. Our ancestors used to work like this, and they ate and clothed themselves from animals."
Rasha: "I took this picture in one of the houses that welcomed us. It’s their son. He was very happy. I made sure that part of their house was shown in the picture because I liked them so much and at the same time I felt sad for them."
Walid: "One of the hardest things in life is to write about someone you love. The person that I admire is not my brother, nor my mother, nor my father, but my girlfriend. I love her so much, and nothing will come between us except death."
Ahmad: "I dream to be a doctor. My hope is that Palestine will be freed. I remember my grandmother who died in prison." The project was funded by Australian Aid and an exhibition of the work can be seen at Host Gallery in London 7-16 December 2009.