Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Busy Busy Busy

A young lady receiving antenal care near Raimate, Liquica District, Timor-Leste
Of late, I have been fairly slack in shooting. In fact, I think I am having the equivalent of writers block. However, I have been working hard in trying to prepare this fund raising show. I have decided to include this image, amongst a small collection of other images from clinics and schools in order to drive home the real aims and objectives of this fund raising exercise.

I have been asked by many people 'Why Timor?'. Timor-Leste is one of our closest and poorest neighbours (an hour away by plane, or 600 kms). Only one in three women recieve antenal care, and the maternal and infant mortality rate is roughly ten times that of Australia. However, the small Austronesian nation recieves almost no media coverage, and the standard of coverage is so infatuated by the 'Australian Perspective' of detention centres and Chinese relations in the nation that the real issues of poverty, education, and health care, and public infrastructure are almost always overlooked.

While photographing at Bairo Pite clinic, a power failure (something that happens regularly in Dili) resulted in the death of a patient who was relying on oxygen. A quick look at a cemetery will reveal many tiny graves of children who have died of malnutrition, TB, Malaria, Typhoid, and Dengue. Detention centres and Chinese building contracts seem so insignificant once you are on the ground.

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