The photographic work of five hundred young snappers from Londonderry - including pupils from Newbuildings Primary School - has been showcased at a week-long exhibition in the city centre.
As part of the Northern Ireland Housing Executive’s (NIHE) Junior Warden scheme primary school children from across the city of Londonderry captured a moment on camera that summed up their world, which then went on display at The Void Community Gallery.
The Junior Warden scheme encourages primary school children to take ownership of their surroundings and become more responsible and committed in making their community a safer and cleaner environment in which to live.
Throughout the year, some five hundred primary school children in total participated in the scheme across Londonderry.
The laudable initiative, which is funded by the Londonderry Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP), involved the pupils taking part in anti-social behaviour talks, a poster competition, a tour of the city and environmental clean-ups.
It culminated in the ‘The Way We See It’ photographic project where the schoolchildren were given a digital camera and asked to go out and take a photo that captured how they see life in their own community.
And the results were amazing, from abstract shots of their favourite objects to endearing family photos, it was all there.
One lucky junior warden in each of the twenty participating classes won the camera used by the class.
Among the winners were Aine Hill with her photo of a pyramid of friends; Adam Duncan for his Movember photo taken at a misty morning rugby practice; and Katie Devlin who photographed her Grandfather’s horses.
The Northern Ireland Housing Executive’s (NIHE) Social Education Officer, Patrick Duddy said: “The intention of the photography project, ‘The Way We See It’, is to get the kids involved to stop and take a look at all the positive aspects of their lives.
“It’s great watching them make their final selection for the exhibition from a selection of photographs they have taken – deciding to show off your pet, your family or your best friends is no easy task!”
The senior education officer said: “The photographs the kids make never cease to impress me, the time and energy they put in really shines through; and without doubt the hardest aspect of the project for me is choosing just one winner in each class.”
“Funding has again been secured from the Policing and Community Safety Partnership to continue the Junior Project in the upcoming school year, with the first kids beginning in the autumn term,” added Patrick.
Drew Thompson, Chair of PCSP, said: “The aim of Derry PCSP funding the Junior Warden Project is to educate our young people at an early age on how their behaviour can impact on those around them and to instil a sense of civic pride.
“I am amazed at the variety of pictures on show taken by the young people involved in the project. Each picture tells its own story and speaks volumes of the pride that the young people involved in the Junior Warden project have in their surroundings, community, family and friends.”