The Helen Bamber Foundation is a UK-based human rights organisation
We help to mend what was broken in a safe and supportive environment
We help people who have experienced torture, trafficking and other forms of cruelty.
‘I am what I am today because of Helen Bamber Foundation.’ – Anita, survivor.
The Photography group consists of a mixed group of ten students from countries as diverse as the Congo, Bangladesh and Iran, led voluntarily by current photography professionals Alicia & Tracey. We aim to find ways of moving forward from destructive experiences, generating self esteem through respect, understanding and creativity.
Our workshops consist of a mixture of practical photography sessions and exhibition visits to places like the V&A and Kew Gardens. We often use photography competitions and festivals as an outlet for our work, which also leads us to interact with the wider photographic community, not only furthering our learning potential, but also developing and redefining ourselves as ‘photographers’ rather than ‘asylum seekers’ or ‘refugees’.
The workshops are a space to try to forget about problems past and present, to develop friendships and hobbies, make high quality work and simply to have fun. The group is close knit, yet welcoming as members encourage each other both creatively and personally, and there is always a lot of laughter during the sessions!
To let our students speak:
‘The photography class gave me a sense of worth which I lost a long time back. When I saw my photo was selected for competition, it gave me more strength to look forward to the future. The tutors are so welcoming that they allow us to push our creative boundary further without the slightest burden on our shoulder…they not only teach us, they also listen to us and feel our problems.’
‘In the Helen Bamber Foundation, they say ‘wherever I go, the sky is always mine’. The photography class made me believe that the sky is always mine.’
‘These classes are very important especially when you don’t have any hope and you feel scared and restless, these classes can give people like me a chance to divert their attention to a new world, a world of art and love’
Links to our photo projects: