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Haitian Studies Association 26th Annual Conference
Migration, Crossing Boundaries, Paths Forward

Haiti Photo Exhibit

The Kellogg Institute for International Studies held a University-wide photo contest to discover compelling photographs of contemporary Haiti. Open to University of Notre Dame students, alumni, faculty, and staff, the contest focused on the HSA conference theme: “Migration, Crossing Boundaries, Paths Forward.”

Top submissions and winners in each of four categories will be on exhibit during the HSA conference in the Hesburgh Center for International Studies.

Photo Contest Entries

Click to toggle between thumbnail and full image.

Grand Prize Winner


Haitian "Goyita" — Thomas F. Anderson

When I saw this woman, I was struck by her resemblance to the subject of a famous painting by Puerto Rican artist Rafael Tufiño, known on the island as "El pintor del pueblo" (the painter of the people). The painting, Goyita, depicts the artist's mother with the San Juan slum where he grew up in the background. The stunning image of her is something of a national symbol for Puerto Rico, and is also well known throughout Latin America. Like Goyita, I see the woman in this photo as an archetype of Caribbean women: beautiful, strong, wise, humble, dignified, determined.


How can we accompany Haitians as they find solutions to their nation’s challenges?

Sharing the load

Sharing the load — Tania Mathurin
(1st place)

Women in rural Haiti are true valiant women and have mastered the art of balancing objects on their heads. This is a picture of me learning this practice and sharing the load with some of the women in a rural community early in the morning.

Friendship at the Well

Friendship at the Well — Marie Hollister
(2nd place)

Here an ND Physics graduate student, Ali, is pumping cold water for this young Haitian girl while on a walk in a rural area outside of Léogâne. Accompanimentompaniment may not always have to be a grand gesture; sometimes it is but a simple act of kindness.

The Invitation

The Invitation — Erik Jensen
(3rd place)

A group of Haitians listen to instructions for an E2E Innovation Incubator, a challenge where a structured activity allows community members use their skill sets to engage in guided, collective problem solving. E2E has used this approach to community source solutions and build local capacity to reveal the creative potential of its participants. Incubators help breed a culture of innovation, empowering Haitians to design further solutions for the challenges the nation faces every day.


Solutions — Tania Mathurin
(honorable mention)

In this picture, a community outside of Leogane, Haiti is working to secure a safe water system with the help of outside support. This moment captured is when they became the experts, and were able to take ownership of the project.

Team Haiti-Working with our colleagues in Haiti

Team Haiti-Working with our colleagues in Haiti — Patricia M. Curtin, MD

During this trip in June, 2014, we worked with the Haitian medical personnel, so that while we were there and upon our departure, we could ensure that there would be continuity of care, and that we would be helping the Haitians help themselves. Sustainability was our goal. This was accomplished with our work as shown in this photo with Dr. Theony Deshommes and Dr. Mary O'Connor (ND '83)

Team Haiti-Working with our Nursing Colleagues

Team Haiti-Working with our Nursing Colleagues — Patricia M. Curtin, MD

Imported white rice was the primary food offered to earthquake survivors. The adverse effects of white rice consumption on Haitian agricultural production and public health are well known. Sacks of rice are carried on motos, the preferred mode of transportation of people and goods today.

ND Student surrounded by love

ND Student surrounded by love — Patricia M. Curtin, MD

We supplied things for the orphans, worked with the Director for food and health care needs. Claire Loftus was a big hit.

Helping Others

Helping Others — Tania Mathurin

A young boy helping his deaf friend through the use of a special device. In Haiti, the deaf and the mute are often belittled by society. Fortunately this boy has the necessary support despite his disability.

The Common Good at the Miton Spring

The Common Good at the Miton Spring — Karen Richman

Students in the Common Good Initiative and E2E engineer Dustin Mix rest at the base of an ancient mapou tree at the spring in Mithon, Léogane in June, 2014.

Accompaniment and public health in Léogane

Accompaniment and public health in Léogane — Karen Richman

Masters Students in the Eck Institute Global Health program confer with anthropologist of Karen Richman, Pierre D'Haiti and two other men on the wording of focus group questions for studies of endemic disease and treatment.

Forging Relationships

Forging Relationships — Alexandros Taflanidis

Graduate student (at that point) Dustin Mix discussing housing solutions with Haitian construction workers and community members, next to an IDP camp (seen in the background). Through sweat and hard work together they plan to forge a new future for Haiti.


Human Development

What does innovative, community-based development in Haiti look like?


Reforestation — Tania Mathurin
(1st place)

Deforestation and agriculture devastation are large problems in Leogane, Haiti. This particular community with outside support worked to plant moringa gardens in their community. In this particular photo, you can see the damaging effects of deforestation on the land. This community however was able to formulate a solution and come together to carry it out.

 "Etap Pa Etap" -- Step By Step

"Etap Pa Etap" -- Step By Step — Erik Jensen
(2nd place)

A participant in an E2E Innovation Incubator thoughtfully plans his design for a bench. Using unconventional materials, he must create and build a design which will be scored based on its functionality, cost and aesthetics. Through critical thinking and collective problem solving, Haitians are given the opportunity to engage with challenging problems, further motivating and inspiring creative solutions outside of just the housing sector.

Mountains Beyond Mountains of Trash

Mountains Beyond Mountains of Trash — Mary White and Claire Loftus
(3rd place)

This picture, "Mountains Beyond Mountains of Trash" refers to the book by Tracy Kidder about the medical and humanitarian quests of Dr. Paul Farmer. However, in this case, the mountains refers to the mountains of trash seen throughout the streets and mountains in Haiti. We hope that in the future, the effect of the their trash cluttered environment on their daily lives will inspire them to make decisions to improve their sanitation system.

Judge's comment: "I like the fact that the mountain of plastic bottles reminds us that "development" has its downsides."


Grit — Erik Jensen
(honorable mention)

It takes many hands to build a home, but it also takes the skills and insights of locals. Two construction workers contribute their grit and sweat to build a home, but they also contribute their understanding of local practices. Traditional construction knowledge, coupled with innovative design, elicits holistic pathways to permanent housing from within a community.

 Helping Hands Along the Road

Helping Hands Along the Road — Mary White and Claire Loftus
(honorable mention)

At first glance, one sees the uniting hands of the three Haitian children as they make their way to Sunday morning mass. Stepping back, however, one recognizes that the earth underneath the three children's feet is not the typical dirt filled streets, but a road. The newly lain road symbolizes a more stable ground from which a stronger Haitian community can grow.

 Tande, Inovasyon, Libere (Listen, Innovate, Empower)

Tande, Inovasyon, Libere (Listen, Innovate, Empower) — Alexandros Taflanidis

Faculty member Tracy Kijewski-Correa and Haitian community leaders discuss with local representatives sustainable housing solutions, solutions that are developed with the participation of the community at every step of the process.

 Incubating Dreams

Incubating Dreams — Alexandros Taflanidis

Elderly carpenter working on a community-led incubator activity (construction of a bench with limited resources) while a small kid watches with great interest. Such incubator activities inspire local communities to dream of a better Haiti that will arise from within.

 Heart to Heart

Heart to Heart — Mary White and Claire Loftus

Heart to Heart depicts a young woman (Mary White) listening to the heart of a small Haitian boy. She is part of the Notre Dame Haiti Program and is working at a mobile medical clinic that was set up in Haiti's mountainous terrain. She feels that Melinda Gate's words represents this photo well: "But in the course of your lives, without any plan on your part, you'll come to see suffering that will break your heart. When it happens, and it will, don't turn away from it; turn toward it. That is the moment when change is born." She is physically assisting in the development of Haiti's community by providing medical care for the future innovators of Haiti.


Democracy and Community

How are Haitians empowered to take part in making decisions about their futures?


Education — Tania Mathurin
(1st place)

Community-based development starts with education. This particular community came together to learn about the moringa plant and how they can incorporate it into their communities.

Women Rally

Women Rally — Tania Mathurin
(2nd place)

A community health worker motivating the women in her community to empower themselves and participate in decision-making processes.

Fanm Vayan (valiant women)

Fanm Vayan (valiant women) — Tania Mathurin
(3rd place)

Women taking part in a community based agricultural project.

It Takes a Village

It Takes a Village — Tania Mathurin
(honorable mention)

A community outside of Leogane, Haiti came together to secure a water source. Everyone in the community was involved, including the youngest ones.

White rice and mottos

White rice and mottos — Karen Richman

Imported white rice was the primary food offered to earthquake survivors. The adverse effects of white rice consumption on Haitian agricultural production and public health are well known. Sacks of rice are carried on motos, the preferred mode of transportation of people and goods today.


Faces of Dignity

How do you see human dignity expressed in the everyday lives of Haitians?

On a Shoestring

On a Shoestring — Thomas F. Anderson
(1st place)

I titled this photo "on a shoestring" (see the shoestring hanging to left of subject) because so many Haitians are forced to seek out a living with a very small amount of money and resources.

Grand Goave Lobsterman

Grand Goave Lobsterman — Thomas F. Anderson
(2nd place)

While taking photos along the coast near Grand Goave, I spent an hour or so watching this Haitian lobster fisherman as he expertly manipulated his lobster trap and transported it back and forth out to sea on his dugout canoe.  This was a man who had clearly mastered his craft, and his diligence and apparent pride in his work conjured the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., who once said that "All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence." 


Father-daughter — Tania Mathurin
(3rd place)

This picture speaks dignity because of the loving look of the father to his daughter.

Gazing into a Brigther Future

Gazing into a Brigther Future — Alexandros Taflanidis
(honorable mention)

Couple outside of their local business shares their hopes about rebuilding their home and livelihood.

A Look Inside

A Look Inside — Erik Jensen
(honorable mention)

A Haitian construction worker applies stucco to the interior walls of a home – yet, this home is not the type of vulnerable, temporary home which he is most likely Accompanimentustomed to building. With the home’s reinforced concrete frame, he can be confident and proud that this permanent, dignified home will endure.

Faustin Amilcar

Faustin Amilcar — Karen Richman
(honorable mention)

Faustin Amilcar has long been the defacto oral historian of his community and is now the oldest living member there.


Sebyen Dioguy — Thomas F. Anderson
(honorable mention)

90-year-old Sebyen Dioguy was born in Ka Piti, Haiti, where I took this photo in December 2011. "He was," Accompanimentording to Karen Richman, who served as our guide and interpreter "a powerful shamanic leader, who could intimidate or charm with equal ease." I think this image of the elderly Dioguy, who passed away in 2013, captures well the air of dignity in a wise man who has earned the honor and respect of his people.

Jesus Revient Bientot

Jesus Revient Bientot — Thomas F. Anderson

Despite constant hardship and suffering, Hatians' faith in God is displayed everywhere.

Fruit of the Earth

Fruit of the Earth — Thomas F. Anderson

Daily Bread

Daily Bread — Thomas F. Anderson


Magic — Thomas F. Anderson


Untitled — Thomas F. Anderson

Hung Out to Dry

Hung Out to Dry — Thomas F. Anderson

Hope for Haiti

Hope for Haiti — Patricia Curtin, MD

Our team of fifteen members from the Notre Dame Haiti Program spent time with the children and staff of the Home of Hope for Orphans in June 2014. We brought them medical supplies, school supplies, toys, uniforms, food, and we think hope for better days ahead. We were adding to the joy already supplied by the group led by Rochester's Dr. Ralph Pennino and group who had built the bunk houses for the children in January 2014.

From our family to yours in Haiti

From our family to yours in Haiti — Patricia Curtin, MD

Our family, Dr. Patricia Curtin White ('80), and daughters, Mary White (ND '17) and Ann White (senior in high school), worked with Haitian children in the orphanage, coloring, drawing pictures, sharing time, talent, and treasures with them. They were our family and they were ours. They asked us to draw pictures of families for them.

Family for a Day

Family for a Day — Patricia Curtin, MD

The little girl in Mary White's (ND '17) lap, is one we saw in January, 2014. She was quite sick then, seems better now, but still with severe scoliosis and not well nourished. She asked Mary to draw her a family. This is what it looked like.

One on one in Haiti

One on one in Haiti — Patricia Curtin, MD

Young 9th grader, Bridget, daughter of Dr. Mary O'Connor, was content with her one on one time with each of the orphans. She held them as if to never let go.

A beautiful face in Haiti, sticker and all

A beautiful face in Haiti, sticker and all — Patricia Curtin, MD

Another orphan who we spent time with, who loved the stickers we gave them. His face tells a lot of stories...


Man to man — Patricia Curtin, MD

Jack (High School Senior from Arizona) spent a lot of time with the children, one on one and in groups. He gave them something they don't get often-unconditional love and time.

Nurse and child

Nurse and child — Patricia Curtin, MD

Linda (Diz) Brosmer, RN, mother of ND graduate, Daniel Brosmer, played a key role in the team's success. She brought clothes and supplies for the children, and held each of them, as if they were her own.

First Communion Mass

First Communion Mass — Marie Hollister

Children in perfectly pressed, bright white outfits walked through the dusty streets of Léogane to their First Communion mass service, under tents where the Sainte-Rose-de-Lima Church was destroyed in the 2010 earthquake. A group of us "blan" were seated at the back but welcomed wholeheartedly, sharing in the spirit, enthusiasm, and even mischief with which the Haitian children participated in their sacramental mass in this makeshift place of worship.


Untitled — Tania Mathurin

Children in tent cities are often blind to their realities which also works to reinforce their dignity.


Untitled — Mary O'Connor

Many times we bring our family so they may know the richness of the Haitian people. Our families go with the intention of helping, and as in the case are the one who are positively changed forever. This little girl whose life we did not drastically alter, will be a catalyst to my teen daughter's battle with leukemia.

Children returning from school

Children returning from school — Karen Richman

Children return to home at the end of the school day. They wear their custom-made elementary school uniform, with their names embroidered on them.

Mural of Ezili Dantò/Mater Salvatoris with artist

Mural of Ezili Dantò/Mater Salvatoris with artist — Karen Richman

Jean Dioguy poses next to his beautiful wall painting of the lwa/spirit Ezili Dant˜ and her child. She is also the saint, Mater Salvatoris.

Tijwa loves his bath

Tijwa loves his bath — Karen Richman

Tijwa entertained himself and everyone else in the yard when he took his bath.

Charlie Fandala's Play on Zombies

Charlie Fandala's Play on Zombies — Karen Richman

Charlie Fandala playfully mocks foreigners' stereotypes of the Haitian zombie by donning this shirt.

Mural of Ezili Freda/Mater Dolorosa in Shrine

Mural of Ezili Freda/Mater Dolorosa in Shrine — Karen Richman

Mural by M. Garón in a shrine in Léogane depicts the spirit/lwa Ezili Freda, who is identified with the manifestation of the virgin, Mater Dolorosa.

A future motorcyclist

A future motorcyclist — Karen Richman

This little guy imagines his future as modern man--a motorcycle rider and a smoker.

Market Day

Market Day — Gena Robinson

Dieudonne is helping her mother at the local farmers' market in Darbonne.

A Light Within

A Light Within — Kate Schuenke-Lucien



Abundance — Kate Schuenke-Lucien

Rising Above

Rising Above — Alexandros Taflanidis

Two months after the 2010 earthquake a family lives in a temporary shelter on top of their old home that was turned into rubble. Testament to the determination of maintaining their land; they rise above to rebuild their livelihoods.

Beauty in the Face of Hardship

Beauty in the Face of Hardship — Alexandros Taflanidis

Little girl living in an IDP shelter two years after the 2010 earthquake. Despite the hardships her face and demeanor testifies to the great beauty of the Haitian culture and people.

A Light in the Dark

A Light in the Dark — Mary White and Claire Loftus

This little boy was sitting on the steps calmly observing the events of a mobile medical clinic set up by the Notre Dame Haiti Program. Many of the people visiting the clinic were in the dark because of their ailments, but the boy's radiant smile was a light to all of those around him. Although, he was swaddled in unkempt clothes, his fresh grin washed away the nearby troubles and represented the untouched human dignity lying within the Haitians.







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