Before the COVID emergency, Valerie welcomed US award-winning author and freelance photographer Michael Benanav to the Barbara May Maternity Hospital in Mille, Ethiopia, for three weeks. In addition to his books, Michael writes and/or shoots for The New York Times, Lonely Planet, The Christian Science Monitor Magazine, Geographical, Afar, CNN.com, Wend, and Hand/Eye, among others.
He met Valerie ten-years-ago in India, at the Global Gathering of Women Pastoralists, and had always wanted to visit her in the Afar. Fast forward to 2020 and he decided to report on the pressing issue of the locust plagues affecting the region. Thanks to Valerie he was able to visit a number of Afar villages and engage with many of the local people. Michael’s report on the Afar is as confronting as it is beautiful and we are proud to share it here with you. https://www.afarofethiopia.com