Video Post: Against All Odds

Against All Odds: HIV/AIDS Epidemic Among Indigenous Papuans from Andri Tambunan on Vimeo

I don't often feature the work of other photographers on this blog but Papua is a place that has a special kind of hold on me.  Andri Tambunan is a young documentary photographer working to bring awareness to the large and growing AIDS situation in Papua.  My family and I lived there for a year so I can speak from personal experience to many of things that he is talking about and the situation is alarming.  Human trafficking of sex trade workers into this area is a huge problem and when you combine that with the prevalence of AIDS it ends up being a death sentence for many of these women.  No foreign journalist can get a visa to to enter Papua so many of the issues and events that happen there are almost completely unreported in the world's press.  We saw and heard pitched battles with gunfire, explosions and helicopters flying all night as independence fighters battled with government forces and none of this made it out to world press.  Andri's photographs carry a power and immediacy that reflects the dire situation yet also reflects the hope and the spirit of these wonderful people.  Check out his blog for more images.

-Russell Berg