Lowestoft photographer in visit to help orphan school

Julian Claxton visiting Uganda last year.

Julian Claxton visiting Uganda last year. - Credit: Archant

A photographer has returned to Uganda to work with an Orphan School, helping children take part in a unique photo project.

Children at Eden Standard Preparatory School made a banner for Julian Claxton

Children at Eden Standard Preparatory School made a banner for Julian Claxton - Credit: Archant

Julian Claxton, 34, from Oulton, has previously visited Eden Standard Preparatory School, situated in the mountains of the Southwest of the country.

He has spent several weeks camping in the community in the country and teaching the children how to take photographs and providing them with pictures.

Mr Claxton exhibited images from a previous African adventure in the Britten Centre last August in an event entitled 'Western Uganda: A Perspective'.

After spending time with the children in May of last year, he was determined to go back and see them again.

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'For me it's not simply about being a westerner with a bag of cash or goodies, it's much more about providing time for these orphaned kids and providing them with an opportunity that would simply not be available otherwise.

'I remember when I was 11 - a photographer came into school and taught us.

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'That inspired me and I want to do the same.

'By teaching these kids photography, I hope that they will shoot images of their life, providing photos for them to keep and hopefully inspiring them.

'It's not about poverty, it's about seeing life from their perspective and no doubt showing above all else, human dignity.

'While I'm staying in the community I will also be shooting my own body of work, looking at the children and the people who look after them, providing an intimate glimpse at country life in Uganda', Mr Claxton said.

Eden school is 12 miles from the border with Rwanda and has 84 pupils from the small local community, many of whom are orphans.

The school is an independent, non government project, created by a passionate young local, who wanted to help the children in his community.

Alongside the cameras, Mr Claxton is also returning with educational resources and materials for the school.

Upon his return from Uganda, Mr Claxton will be working with Pakefield Primary School, where children from will get the chance to work on a similar project.

Images of the African school will be being shown alongside images from Pakefield, enabling the children to understand the life of each other and to get a true reflection of life in Africa.

An exhibition of his work, incorporating his new images, will be shown in Norwich in August 2015.

Mr Claxton also cycled 6,000 miles across Europe and Africa in 2012, to help children in Rwanda.

Further information and updates on the project are available via the blog on Julian's website, www.julianclaxtonphotography.com

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