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These Three Instagram Photographers Are So Good They Got $10,000 Grants

After more than 1,200 entries from 109 countries, three Instagram photographers have received $10,000 each to continue “documenting stories from underrepresented communities around the world usi...
These Three Instagram Photographers Are So Good They Got $10,000 Grants
Written by Josh Wolford
  • After more than 1,200 entries from 109 countries, three Instagram photographers have received $10,000 each to continue “documenting stories from underrepresented communities around the world using Instagram.”

    The grant comes from Getty, who launched the Getty Images Instagram Grant program back in May.

    “Our three recipients could not better exemplify the original aim of this grant: to document and share stories of underrepresented communities that otherwise rarely come into focus. We are honored to award these grants and hope they will encourage talent to continue to tell important stories through new platforms,” says Elodie Mailliet Storm, Getty Images’ Senior Director of Content Partnerships.

    The three winners will receive mentorship from a Getty photographer alongside their $10,000.

    Without further ado, here’s who’s impressing with their Instagram photography.

    Ismail Ferdous, a Bangladeshi photographer:

    The volunteers who rushed to Rana Plaza to participate in the rescue operations were mostly all civilians—consisting of students, day laborers, rickshaw-pullers, vegetable vendors, and businessmen from the surrounding area in Savar. Many had never been trained or briefed on how to rescue people in disaster situations. They felt the call to serve and from their intuition, they went to Rana Plaza and helped in any way they could. Volunteers completed a range of activities from rescuing live victims to supplying equipments to searching and recovering dead bodies. Others were in charge of controlling the mob and family members around the collapse site, some carried wounded people to the ambulances, some worked to assist senior trained volunteers, some provided food to other rescuers, and some supplied food and drinking water to those victims that were trapped under the rubble. Despite not having proper training, they worked. They knew they had to do it and other people’s survival depended on their actions. A survey was conducted by the Bangladeshi Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief along with prominent international aid organizations to gage the experiences and impact of the Rana Plaza volunteers. The study was conducted with 52 urban volunteers. Out of the total amount, approximately 65% men and 35% women and their ages range from 16 to 40+. Most volunteers who helped rescue victims were between the ages of 18-22—students who felt it was their duty to step in when a national crisis had befallen them. Let us always remember the volunteers who came forward to serve humanity despite the dangers that could have befallen them. Many volunteers died during rescue operations. We must remember volunteers are an integral part of Rana Plaza’s narrative (Read more on the website) Photo: @ismailferdous #afterranaplaza #bangladesh #ranaplaza

    A photo posted by After Rana Plaza (@afterranaplaza) on

    Volunteers who came forward to work as rescuers were from all walks of life. Some lived nearby, others came from far away, while some were family members who wanted to find their loved ones. Being a volunteer after the Rana Plaza collapse meant being available on call around the clock. You never knew when you will be needed. From the morning of the 24th of April until the 14th of May, 2013, all the volunteers working to rescue the victims barely rested. They had little sleep, inadequate self-hygiene and self-care, were scarcely eating and constantly busy with the thoughts of their next mission. When they were not within the rubble, they were visiting those who they have rescued to reassure the victims were recovering or they would catch a wink of sleep in the makeshift hostel in an area close to the site of the collapse. Monir Hossain Tushar, a Rana Plaza volunteer rescuer, shares, "On the first Friday after the Rana Plaza collapse, we rescued a woman whose leg was infected and her hand was injured as well. When we visited her at Enam Medical College few weeks later, she told me that I looked familiar. It was at that moment that I remembered I had rescued her." Constantly circulating amidst a haze, volunteers had to remain physically, psychologically and emotionally stable despite the pressures. Although the stench of dead corpses and battling a constant fear that the building might crumble amidst a rescue mission, the volunteers stayed strong. Despite being unbathed in the sweltering heat for 10 to 15 days straight, their spirits were not broken. The spirit of service and directly seeing the impact of their work drove them to continue working despite the hardships. (Read more on the website) @ismailferdous #afterranaplaza #bangladesh #ranaplaza

    A photo posted by After Rana Plaza (@afterranaplaza) on

    AFTER RANA PLAZA : An Update "Call for Justice — Finally Heard"- 1 June 2015 After two years of one of the greatest industrial catastrophic atrocities, justice is finally being served in Bangladesh. This week, 42 charges have officially been issued by the Bangladeshi government authority against those who are responsible for the atrocious incident which killed, destabilized, and handicapped thousands of helpless people. These charges are against the factory owners, corrupt government officials and evidently the building owner himself, Sohel Rana. The Rana Plaza collapse killed 1,135 people on April 24, 2013. Justice must be provided for the innumerable unfortunate deaths. Over 1,000 workers, as well as building construction officials have provided testimonials of the known presiding cracks and unsafe conditions of the building prior to the collapse. Everyone knew the collapse was imminent and yet, workers had to report to work due to threats from those who are currently being charged for the inhumane crime. Workers were forced to walk the plank onto their own death traps. Survivors, volunteers, labor organizations, fire services, the Bangladeshi Army as well as others can provide testaments to the truth of the building's condition which caused the disaster to occur. If we do not continue to ask these questions and fight for those who lost it all, how will the situation improve? Copious survivors have never received fair compensation and are permanently emotionally and physically disabled. We must ask those who have been charged what the cost of a human life is to them. Was it worth the profit to place all those innocent souls in harm's way? With presiding trials in court, we will receive answers to these questions. @ismailferdous #afterranaplaza #bangladesh #ranaplaza

    A photo posted by After Rana Plaza (@afterranaplaza) on

    Adriana Zehbrauskas, a Brazilian photographer currently living in Mexico City:

    And Dmitry Markov, from Pskov, Russia:

    Boarding school for young criminals, Sebezh, Russia

    A photo posted by Dmitry Markov ( on

    Orthodox monk helps a woman with disability to come down from the hill. Pskov-Pechersky Monastery

    A photo posted by Dmitry Markov ( on

    A photo posted by Dmitry Markov ( on

    “Every day people come to Instagram to be transported, to be inspired, and to learn something new about the world around them,” said Amanda Kelso, Director of Community at Instagram. “Ismail, Adriana, and Dmitry are master visual storytellers whose work on Instagram shines a powerful spotlight on causes in need of champions.”

    Work on that Instagramming, folks. And have a social cause to champion.

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