I am a strong believer that access to good quality health care is a fundamental and essential human right. Whatever the limitations of the Affordable Care Act, the goal of making health care available to everyone, is a non-negotiable one.
When I moved to the US in 2008 I was introduced to an organization called HealthRight International. This incredible non-profit builds lasting access to health for excluded communities, employing a human rights-based approach and working closely with community partners to improve local capacity and advance the inclusivity of health systems. HealthRight are active in some of the most marginalized and vulnerable populations around the world including torture and trafficking survivors, orphans and people living with HIV.
In 2014, HealthRight partnered with photographer Daniel Jack Lyons on a series of images called Portraits of Resilience. The series celebrates the triumph of excluded communities around the world over disease and discrimination. Excluded populations – including street youth, minorities of all types, drug users, sex workers, and more – bear a disproportionately large burden of ill health and human rights violations in virtually every society around the world. Stigma, misguided laws, and myopic institutions perpetuate a vicious cycle of disease, discrimination and violence that ensnares these communities. These photographs feature individuals who have benefitted from HealthRight’s work in Kenya, Nepal, Ukraine and the USA.
The photographs will be sold and auctioned at two benefit events, one in LA and one in NYC, with all proceeds going to support HealthRight’s work with excluded population. I am honored to be hosting the online exhibition of Daniel’s work for HealthRight at The Road Gallery until April 30, 2015. Please take a moment to check out these inspiring images, and consider buying one. All the proceeds go straight to HealthRight initiatives.
Over the next two weeks, we will be sharing the stories behind each of the images on the blog.