@nicholesobecki

Nichole Sobecki

Photographer with VII Photo based in Nairobi, Kenya.

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/06/07/honduras-why-people-flee-photos-227087

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My beautiful, unstoppable friend @danielleposa takes a quiet moment away from her wedding celebrations to nurse her daughter Gigi. What a woman you found @christian.pusateri, and what joy sharing this day with you all. . #posateri #stcroix #supermama #love

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Earlier this year @jillfilipovic and I spent a few weeks in one of the deadliest cities in the world, as we tried to understand why people choose to flee Honduras, and what they’re hoping to leave behind. Violence here comes in many forms, from the murders of women, to gang wars and conflict over drugs and guns. Underpinning nearly every killing is a climate of impunity that has taken the lives of far too many. Moreover, the Honduran police are both understaffed—in the northern district of San Pedro Sula, home to nearly 230,000 people and where well-known gangs like Barrio 18 and MS-13 operate, just 50 police officers watch over its 189 neighborhoods—and plagued by corruption and abuse. . 1: Police officers frisk civilians and check their ID cards on a criminal database outside a pool bar, while others search the facility, in San Pedro Sula. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ 2: The tag for MS-13 is sprayed across a wall in La Rivera Hernandez, one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in San Pedro Sula. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Link in my bio to our latest piece for @politicomag ‘Why People Flee Honduras.’ . #honduras #violence #women #migration

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‘I Can No Longer Continue to Live Here.’ What’s driving so many Honduran women to the U.S. border? The reality is worse than you’ve heard. . Out today in @politicomag, @jillfilipovic and my story on how Honduras' total criminal ban on abortion and emergency contraception raises the cost of violence against women -- and pushes many to flee. #honduras #violence #women #abortion #migration

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“If they’re killing you here, it’s better to go die in the desert,” women’s rights lawyer Vanessa Siliezar told @jillfilipovic and I as we reported our @theIWMF supported story on how Honduras' total criminal ban on abortion and emergency contraception raises the cost of violence against women -- and pushes many to flee. Out today as the Friday cover of @politicomag. . In Jill’s words: “When exhausted families, mothers toting babies and young women traveling alone arrive at the southern border of the United States, it’s not just gang violence or criminality in general that they’re fleeing. It’s also… men who beat, assault, rape and sometimes kill women and girls; law enforcement that does little to curtail them; and laws that deny many women who do survive the chance to retake control and steer their own lives." . Grateful to have been able to work on this story with the always brilliant @jillfilipovic, and Jenny Núñez who was with us every step of the way. Many thanks to @ktellsworth for the lovely edit. . #honduras #abortion #violence #women #migration

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I was driving to Mareero, a smuggling hub in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland, when distant human forms began to emerge from the dusty, hazy horizon. Somali and Ethiopian migrants were walking to caves, where they will wait for the dhow boats that will carry them on the perilous journey across the Gulf of Aden to Yemen, and eventually to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states. By amplifying sudden disasters like storms and floods, and slower crisis like drought and desertification, our warming planet is driving human migration, and becoming one of the world’s most destabilizing forces. On this World Environment Day, I hope we can both celebrate our deep connections to the natural world and also remember the ways in which its increasing fragility is pushing millions of people from their homes. . #climatemigration #somalia #environment #worldenvironmentday

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Trauma can be inherited, passed down like blood, shared in love. When I met with a women in who had survived sexual violence during Colombia's civil war our conversation was not just about old wounds – we’re looking at fresh ones too. She’s frazzled and apologetic when she’s hours late to meet journalist @jillfilipovic and I. It’s only later, after a long interview, that she tells us the reason: she had recently told her teenage son about what happened to her and he had attempted suicide. She was late because she had been pawning valuables to pay the bill for his rehab facility. . Her son is a gentle kid, slow-moving and sweet, but she says she knows there’s anger and anguish underneath the surface. She is careful with him, holding and working through her own pain so he won’t take it on. But he does. We hear from nearly everyone here that this conflict spared no one, and that deep wounds – physical, psychic, social, familial – fester everywhere, just out of sight. . The woman’s son has a girlfriend who is also just a teenager, and she’s there when he comes home. They celebrate his return, and she hopes to help him mend. She has a tattoo across the front of her shoulder: “Looking for happiness and a promise of love.” . #wheretoturn #abortion #conflict #generationaltrauma #colombia

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The wheels of vehicles are washed with chlorinated water and people's temperatures are checked at Mukulya checkpoint on the road between Beni and Butembo. The government imposed an array of checkpoints along the road in a bid to quarantine areas affected by Ebola. . To learn more about the ongoing Ebola outbreak take a look at our @natgeo story “Life amid an Ebola outbreak: Combating mistrust—and saving lives.” Link in bio. . #ebola #drc #health #security

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Kavugho Mukoni Romelie, 16, is treated for Ebola in a biosecure CUBE at the Alliance for International Medical Action center in Beni, Democratic Republic of Congo. Kavugho and I met at a dangerous and unpredictable moment in her treatment, so it was with joy and relief that I later learned that not only did she survive but that she has returned to the treatment center as a "guarde malade.” Ebola survivors are no longer susceptible to the virus, so many like Kavugho are now working with their communities to dispel widespread rumors and care for patients and lone children. . To learn more about the ongoing Ebola outbreak — already the second largest in history, and the first in an active war zone — take a look at our @natgeo story “Life amid an Ebola outbreak: Combating mistrust—and saving lives” Link in bio. . #ebola #drc #health #survivor

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Ebola survivor Kambale Muhongya, 43, in his home in Beni, Democratic Republic of Congo. Kambale's wife was a nurse and contracted Ebola at the hospital where she worked. He cared for her, and days after her funeral he fell ill. “I was so worried about my children,” he told me. “Their mother had just died, and if I died too I didn't know what would happen to them.” Thankfully Kambale survived, and now works at the Ebola Treatment Center to "help other patients get healthy like me, and to push the Ebola epidemic from Congo." . To learn more about the ongoing Ebola outbreak — already the second largest in history, and the first in an active war zone — take a look at our @natgeo story “Life amid an Ebola outbreak: Combating mistrust—and saving lives” Link in bio. . #ebola #drc #health #survivor

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Thrilled to announce the newest members of @everydayafrica! . These ten photographers bring extraordinary talent and vision to our growing community, and represent an expansion of our coverage of the continent, adding Morocco, Algeria, Libya, South Sudan, and Angola to our list of countries. . Such vital perspectives to be able to share as a collective, including @viiphoto mentee @esther_mbabazi, and friends @miorarajaonary, @gulshanii and @everydayzimababwe contributor @izimphoto. . #welcome #everydayafrica #everydayeverywhere

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Tanzanian soldiers from the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) on joint patrol with the Congolese army in the red zone in Munzambayi, an area near Beni. The ongoing Ebola outbreak is already the second largest in history, and the first in an active war zone, where more than 100 armed groups are operating. That’s a huge concern not only because of the violence itself, but because every time there’s a security incident essential Ebola response activities stop, and the virus spreads further. . To learn more about the ongoing Ebola outbreak take a look at our @natgeo story “Life amid an Ebola outbreak: Combating mistrust—and saving lives.” Link in bio. . #ebola #drc #health #security

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Portrait of Ebola survivor Aisha Ramzani Djadi, 17, in the bedroom of her home in Beni, Democratic Republic of Congo. When she first became ill, Aisha was pregnant and she lost the baby during her treatment. She is just one of many in this central African nation caught between the promise of new anti-Ebola measures and the barriers to their success: widespread fear, mistrust of foreign-run medical relief efforts, and general unrest fed by armed militias, poverty, and despair. As she works to rebuild her life in the wake of great loss, Aisha has returned to care for others fighting the virus at the Ebola Treatment Center in Beni. "I'd like to have more children in the future,” she told me, a nearby window casting light across her young face within the shadowy room where we stood. Out on @natgeo, link in bio. . #ebola #drc #health #survivor

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"As a survivor it can be difficult," Justin Bwambale Muyisa told me in the living room of his home in Butembo in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. "Most people in this community still don't believe Ebola exists, or they'll think that I can still contaminate them. I survived Ebola, but now I'm hiding from my own community." . My images and Rachel Jones' insightful words on the ongoing Ebola outbreak are out today in  @natgeo. It was one of the toughest stories I've ever worked on -- already the second largest Ebola outbreak in history, and the first in an active war zone. And with an escalating number of new cases, there's no end in sight. Grateful to  @jamesbwellford for believing in this story, and in me, the daily phone calls while reporting, and his sensitive edit here. . The most inspiring thing about being there in the midst of such a difficult moment for Congo was getting to know a number of Ebola survivors like Justin, many of who are now working to support efforts to contain the virus, combat misinformation within their communities, or care for other Ebola patients. The ways in which they are moving forward in the face of great loss and continued stigma was humbling. I am also in awe of the remarkable health workers with the @who, @alima.ngo, @doctorswithoutborders, @icrc, local hospital and others, who continue to push forward in a risky and complicated environment to ensure that care is given to those who need it most. . I hope you'll take a minute to read their stories, and learn more about this undercovered and underfunded crisis, and the perfect storm that is making it so difficult to stop. . #ebola #drc #health #survivor @viiphoto

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Excited to share that @dannywilcoxfrazier and I are teaming up again for a weeklong @VIIPhoto workshop in Nairobi, Kenya, this September 14-21, focused on Africa’s changing urban spaces. Enrollment is open now, link in bio. . I really love this image by Lance Larson @samizdatfilms, who joined us last year and created a series exploring the challenges Nairobians face while moving through their burgeoning city. A paucity of public transportation options colliding with an increasing number of private vehicles has overburdened Nairobi's infrastructure, resulting in the longest commute times of any city on the continent. . 'Rising Fast' explores the changing realities of Nairobi, Kenya, one of the world’s fastest-growing urban spaces. Contrary to reductive stereotypes of Africa, Kenya is riding a strong economy, a youth-driven cultural awakening and a dynamic tech scene coined the “Silicon Savannah.” Huge challenges remain however: widespread poverty, poor infrastructure, human rights abuses, and political tumult. Does the “Africa Rising” narrative holds up, and how are people’s lives being impacted on the ground? . #risingfast #nairobi #kenya #viiphoto #workshop

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There may be no medical procedure in the world that is at once as controversial, as legally regulated, and as common as abortion. Abortion bans are making headlines in the United States, but laws that outlaw and even criminalize the procedure aren't some dystopian future problem. For millions of women and girls, they are reality. Worldwide, a quarter of pregnancies end in abortion every year; nearly half of these abortions are unsafe, with most unsafe abortions occurring in countries where the procedure is outlawed or tightly restricted. . I’ve spent the last year trying to understand the true cost of denying women this right with my dear friend and brilliant writer @jillfilipovic. Here, a family sleeps at the bus terminal in San Pedro Sula before beginning the journey to the US alongside hundreds of other Hondurans. Honduras has one of the highest rates of violence against women in the world, and sexual violence is endemic. Both abortion and emergency contraception, though, are banned, including for rape survivors and minor girls. We traveled to Honduras last month on a grant from  @theIWMF to assess the impact of these bans on women, on violence, and on migration. . A fuller story is coming soon, but what we found, in the words of one women's rights activist, is that when it comes to violence, reproductive freedom, and migration, "everything is connected." Laws that turn women who end pregnancies into criminals lead to laws that bar women and girls, including rape victims, from preventing unwanted pregnancies. Bans on abortion and contraception stem from the same root as rape and other gendered violations: An insidious and pervasive conviction that women's bodies are not their own. "A mom will do anything for her children," that women's rights advocate told us. And so to protect themselves, and their daughters, Honduran women run. . #wheretoturn #abortion #migration #honduras

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Last day teaching "No Man’s Land: A Workshop for Women" in Sarajevo with these committed visual journalist and artists, and alongside @lindabournane and @saraterry13. In just three days these primarily Balkan photographers put together a collective portrait of this storied city which was screened at the #FestivaloftheImage. From @dijana_mumin: “They taught us to stand up and be proud of who we are as women… and it’s also been amazing that all the former Yugoslav countries have come together to share this experience.” We may be holding up roses but these ladies are tough as nails. . The newly formed @TheVIIAcademy, a project of the @VIIFoundation and partner of @VIIPhoto, will host a 3-day festival of photography and visual journalism in Sarajevo, Bosnia. This educational event is free and open to all, and includes presentations by VII Photo Agency photographers, discussion panels focusing on media and visual journalism, film screenings, portfolio reviews, and much more. . #festivaloftheimage #viiinsarajevo #nomansland #women #bosnia #viiphoto @viiphoto

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And up the show goes! Mounting for the group exhibition “Her Take: (Re)thinking Masculinity” together with @lindabournane and @saraterry13. Join us as doors open tomorrow at 6pm at the Academy of Fine Arts - Sarajevo. . The newly formed @TheVIIAcademy, a project of the @VIIFoundation and partner of @VIIPhoto, will host a 3-day festival of photography and visual journalism in Sarajevo, Bosnia. This educational event is free and open to all, and includes presentations by VII Photo Agency photographers, discussion panels focusing on media and visual journalism, film screenings, portfolio reviews, and much more. . #festivaloftheimage #viiinsarajevo #bosnia #viiphoto

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Presenting the Kenner Lecture today at The Albright Institute in Boston together with my @viiphoto colleagues and friends @maggiesteber @saraterry13 @lindabournane from 12:45-2:15. Come one, come all. Cambridge is grey and drizzly but it's wonderful to be back in my old stomping grounds for a few days. . @viiphoto #sevenofvii #kennerlecture #boston

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