Photo by @amivitale. today is the day! help celebrate international day of the girl and support the important work @rippleeffectimages does in supporting women and girls around the world by joining their stay at home gala. for each dollar donated, ripple effect images can help their aid beneficiaries raise up to 14 dollars for their programs. donate here: http://rippleeffectimages.org/day-of-the-girl-donate/
here, life in the remote #desert town of boujbeja, mali, challenges the arab moors who live there but also offers them peace from the rest of the world. "boujbeja" means the luck of the desert, but after a severe #drought in 1966, they have been fighting the constant push of the sands and must dig 70 meters under ground to get water.
for the last 18 years i've been working to cover under reported issues primarily about women, poverty, health and security. i didn’t realize it when i began but all of these issues are really about our resources and water in particular. stories about the land are always stories about people. you cannot talk about one without the other. i’ve seen firsthand, how women in developing countries bear the greatest burden. #women and #girls are the primary providers of water, and often spend hours each day hauling water from distant sources. in drought, they must walk for hours to find water for their families. some regions of the world face devastating drought conditions, while other regions face rising seas and flooding.
Thank you to the incredible team at @natgeo for bringing so many of us out last night to see jane goodall speak and watch the very moving documentary about her life at @hollywoodbowl with a live orchestra by @philip.glass. she reminds us all that every single one of us can make a difference and that we all must #speakup and fight to protect what is left of this incredible planet. her passion and unrelenting commitment is legendary. she spends 300 days a year on the road running circles around people half her age. #jane is a powerful reminder of what one person can do. congratulations to @natgeo team and director brett morgan who used brilliant archival footage from her late husband wildlife photographer baron hugo van lawick. from left, @natgeo explorer @theerikabergman three of my favorite photographers @amytoensing, @gerdludwig and @michaelnicknichols and me and my monkey.
Photo by @amivitale. i’m delighted to share a 360 video i was able to create with baby pandas in chengdu, china which you can see on youtube https://youtu.be/0xrh2wo1mzs (link in profile) or on the @natgeowild facebook page. it was a privilege to spend time with this very rare, finicky, endangered animal. as soon as i put the 360 degree cameras in the enclosure, the six month old bears would immediately find them and attack! they also loved to climb up my legs and extracting their teeth and claws was sometimes painful but well worth it. it’s hard to imagine, but these animals were once as mythical and elusive as bigfoot. they have been around for millions of years, but were only made known to the western world within the last century. the first panda was captured alive only in 1936.
with only a few thousand in the world, and a national symbol for the chinese, getting close, without interfering with their biology and conservation, and in a way that is acceptable to their understandably protective minders, was challenging. and in a region where bad environmental news is common, the giant panda might prove to be the exception and a testament to the perseverance and efforts of chinese scientists and conservationists. by breeding and releasing pandas, augmenting existing populations, and protecting habitat, china may be on its way to successfully saving its most famous ambassador and in the process put the wild back into an icon.