Sunday, February 07, 2010

Born Into Brothels : An Update

It's been over four years here since I headlined
a Blog link about Zana Briski, the Photographer
whose inspired Photography classes for the children
of Prostitutes in Kolkata, India turned into a
stunning Documentary film entitled
'Born Into Brothels'

Since then there have been some developments
as amazing as the Oscar-winning film itself. Like
Kids With Cameras, a worldwide Non-Profit
organization with branches in Jerusalem, Haiti and
Cairo. The Founders of this Charitable Cause are the
same ones who created the original film, Ross Kaufman 
and Geralyn White Dreyfous who say of themselves,
"We use photography to capture the imaginations
of children, to empower them, building confidence,
self-esteem and hope"

And their ongoing efforts have indeed done just that,
judging by the latest update on one student,
Avijit Halder

who started shooting pictures at age 11. His pure, raw
talent led him to Exhibitions and Awards in cities as distant
as New York and Amsterdam. Rather than give away
all the fascinating details of his and the other childrens'
success, I'll let the links open your minds via the updates.
Suffice it to say that this child born to a Prostitute in
a Brothel in an Indian slum is now busy studying film-making
at Tisch School of Arts at NYU and has already produced
some intriguing YouTube versions of his work !

Avijit needs funds to cover his education at NYU. His
life outcome and talent hang precariously in these hard
economic times. And so he asks those who are appreciative
and able to consider purchasing Postcards of his photos.

Learn more by clicking on this link.

Update Feb 7th 2010 from the BBC  
Not all the children who featured in Born into
Brothels have been so lucky.

Earlier Updates from the Kids With Cameras site 
Suchitra, 14
"When I have a camera in my hands I feel happy.
I feel like I am learning something...I can be someone."


  1. hi its lea. for some reason it wont let mesign in with my google id?? Im so glad that at least some of the children are getting somewhere and are happy.

  2. Not sure why. Maybe sign into your Crafty blog and then click on Followers to see my blog and comment.

    Thanks for trying and succeeding and making a comment from the heart. It was a nice surprise !

  3. Anonymous11:14 PM

    But what happened to the other kids? What happened to Suchitra?

  4. @ Anonymous et al :
    as of June '09 Suchitra has married and moved out of Kolkata, according to the website :

    Thanks for the input, it's always great to know that a few people have been touched enough to comment !

  5. Anonymous2:42 PM

    Please add RSS feed to these sites! Many of us would like to be able to follow.

  6. Anonymous1:51 PM

    I had to watch this video as a project in school. It was a very touching story and I only hope the other children who were all so bright get out of the brothels and have a bright future. You are all strong kids and I wish the best to all of you

  7. Thanks for reading this post, you were obviously touched enough to send out such a heartfelt message to the kids ! I wish your words could be shared more widely !

  8. Anonymous9:40 PM

    i heard puja was in the sex industry, iwas sad to hear that she was the cutest little girl !!!
    kochi looks beautifull now !!!!

  9. Where was this news about Puja ? Unfortunately, I had my doubts about these kids being secure but didn't want to air seems there is invariably a sadder tagline to these tales. And yet, so much good has come out of it all.....the world is still discovering this story, so many years later !

    Thanks for the visit and the comment, very heartening.

  10. It sounds like an amazing movie! Where can I watch it?

  11. Anonymous8:56 PM

    I just watched it today..this heart breaking film has made me see how lucky my children are..I wish all the children could have been helped..But glad to see at least a few will be able to full fill their greatness.

    1. Thanks for the info and the sympathy, Anonymous ! Please share if you can, so others who are unaware may learn and be moved as you were !