Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Inspiration for Shoot Cameras Not Guns

This is an amazingly done multimedia piece from The New Yorker online about the lives of Burmese citizens and refugees. The lives of Burmese people, students, journalists and refugees were the original inspiration for Shoot Cameras Not Guns.
Check out the video about journalists....

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Some Photos!

Here's the first installment of PHOTOS!!!!
These are from week one, before classes began.

Some of my favorites below...

Visiting Consolata Primary School with Technology Partnership (Technology Partnership's Kenya Director, John Kamwara, right)

Our new friends in the market in Meru Region, Kenya.

Classes Have Begun! (This is an understatement)


It's been a week and a half of classes already and due to minimal internet access, this is my first post! I've taught over 200 students so far. They have been primary and secondary school students, as well as teachers. There are 10 cameras that are being donated (thanks to all of you supporters). One camera goes to each school. Each school has approximately 600 students and staff. This is 6,000 people empowered with a new tool for education, journalism and social change!
Students at Meru High School talk about why they want to learn photography.

A photo by and of students at Gikumene Girl's High School.

The students are SO excited about learning photography and many of them want to be professional photographers. Others like photography as a hobby, or just want to learn for fun. Students range from never having used a camera to those whose families own a camera and use it regularly. The majority have never used a camera, or have used one very minimally.

Photo by and of students at Kaaga Boy's High School in a Shoot Cameras Not Guns photography class.

I've so far taught at Meru Boy's High School, Kaaga Boy's High School, Gikumene Girl's High School and am currently teaching classes to the students of Fred's Academy. All of these schools are in or around Meru. The teachers' class that I've also been teaching is made up of teachers who are taking computer literacy classes with Technology Partnership. Along with learning word processing, Excel, and Power Point, they are taking this optional afternoon class and learning how to integrate digital photography with education! (And probably just for fun, too :) It's a LOT of information in one week, but they're all super excited and the photo classes give them a chance to stretch their bones, roll around in the grass and climb on stuff after a long day of learning about computers. Many (but not all) of these teachers' schools will receive a digital camera for the staff and students to borrow and/or use in the classroom. If you'd like to donate a (new or used) camera, contact me at

Here are a few more for the road... (all by the students)

Basketball at Meru Boy's School

Ian helping out with the teachers' class.

The Meru boys brought the camera around campus overnight and came back with these shots (above and below)

Bananas at school!

Gikumene Girl's School

Saturday, November 20, 2010

We're in Kenya!

After 3 days of traveling, we're finally in Meru, a town/small city in central Kenya. Tired but happy, we're preparing for classes to begin on Monday. So far, we've been visiting schools, checking out computer labs, drinking tea, and figuring out how Kenya operates.
All of our hosts and host schools have been so friendly and helpful and we're all really grateful for each other's help. Since this is my first day with computer access, I don't have any photos ready for viewing, so check out these photos by Technology Partnership's tech guru, Tim Rutherford.
If you'd like to donate to the project (cameras, $$$ or digital camera accessories), please contact me at
The team visits Consolata Primary School in Meru, Kenya.

Visiting one of the computer labs.

Shortly after arriving in Nairobi.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Contact Me

To donate cameras, cameras accessories, or if you prefer to send a check, contact me:


Thursday, October 14, 2010

(Almost) no amount too small!

$5 goes a long way, and if each of you contributes this much, we can reach the $3000 goal!
(But keep in mind that PayPal charges a percentage of each donation, so let's try to do $5 and up.) Thanks for your support - we're 1/6 of the way there!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Shoot Cameras Not Guns goes to Kenya!

This November, Shoot Cameras Not Guns is partnering with Technology Partnership to bring computers, digital training and digital photography to schools in Kenya.

Focusing on the city of Meru, Technology Partnership will provide 20 schools with working computers and teacher training on how to use technology in the classroom.

Shoot Cameras Not Guns wants to join! We'll be teaching students at primary and high schools how to use digital photography with computers to tell the world their story.

DONATIONS ARE NEEDED! (Click a "Donate" button on this page to use PayPal, or contact Diana to send a check:

To make this trip a great success, we'll need $3000 and digital camera donations, ideally by the end of October.

We are currently in need of:
Digital Cameras (in good working condition and with all necessary accessories)
Digital Photography Accessories (camera cases, memory cards, batteries, etc)

Let's make this happen!

What it's all about...

Shoot Cameras Not Guns is a non-profit (though not yet a 501(c)3) organization founded by Diana Sabreen in 2006 when she began teaching photojournalism to Burmese refugees, students and journalists-in-exile living in Thailand along the Burmese (Myanmar) border.

The organization focuses on teaching photography in conflict areas as a tool for empowerment through storytelling, accurate journalism and self-expression.

Shoot Cameras Not Guns is currently accepting donations of cameras (preferably digital, and all in good working condition), camera supplies (film, cases, batteries), money, and time.

If you would like to make a donation, volunteer, would like more information, or want to receive updates, please contact

Current immediate needs are:
Web Design
Digital Cameras