From October 1st through 9th, 2020, National Geographic Virtual Photo Camp: Earth Stories brought together more than 25 young people from diverse indigenous cultures around the world to learn photography from National Geographic photographers. The Virtual Photo Camp aimed to elevate the voices of indigenous youth as they told their own stories and gave their perspectives on the issues that matter to them, including environmental justice, land use and land rights, and life through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Instructed by National Geographic photographers Erika Larsen and Tailyr Irvine, the virtual Camp empowered youth with photography skills, meaningful connections with other young people and mentors, and encouragement that their story and views matter, and should be shared.
On the final day of the virtual Camp, the students presented a final show of their photos and reflections to their friends, families, and communities, as well as staff and friends of National Geographic.
Now in its 17th year, National Geographic Photo Camp has conducted more than 110 Camps in 35 countries, reaching thousands of young people with photography training. Virtual Photo Camp: Earth Stories is National Geographic’s second ever virtual Photo Camp, a model that was developed in response to the threat posed by COVID-19.
Photo Camp teaches photography to diverse youth populations around the world, including young people from migrant, refugee, at-risk, and developing communities, to inspire and empower the next generation of storytellers with a foundation for impactful photojournalism, and a meaningful introduction to the world of photography.
At Photo Camp, students learn the basics of photography through mentorship by world-class National Geographic photographers, while building the skills and confidence to have their voices heard, explore the world around them, and develop deep connections with others.
For more than 130 years, the National Geographic Society has pushed the boundaries of discovery to further our understanding of our world. National Geographic is passionate about sharing stories and experiences that make a profound and positive impact on the future of our planet. Through Photo Camp, National Geographic encourages young people to tell their own stories, using cameras to capture their unique perspective on the world.