Some days shout black & white, others scream colour..today was a colour day..shooting down at the Black Market following the children collecting bottles to sell for recycling was made ‘interesting’ as most traders aren’t to keen on photographers and the vodka had already been in full flow for some time before getting there..
Children stand on top of container in Narantuul Market. They store their empty water and vodka bottles there to stop them being stolen. At the end of the day they sell them to recycling companies for a few dollars.
A man looks over the polluted landscape of Ulaan Baatar from the Zaisan Memorial built by the Russians to commemorate unknown soldiers and heroes from various wars.
Sunday so everything starts very late here so a good opportunity to catch up with some post production and sleep..!!..Met some new kids this evening..very different to the other children living down the manholes…despite living in this place for over 3 years from the age of 12 they haven’t started drinking vodka like many others..they have a good relationship with the shop owners who give them food when they run out of money..the plan is to catch up with them again later this week when I’ll know a little more about their lives..it was -23c tonight so relatively mild evening..!!
Munkhbat (15) & Altangeret (15) have lived down this manhole in Unur district of Ulaan Baatar for over 3 years. Violence is commonplace and their manhole has been petrol bombed by rival street children 3 times in the last few years.
Despite the harsh living conditions they haven't started drinking vodka and have a good relationship with the shop owners who often give them food.
Electricity is produced by a number of huge coal burning power stations which adds to the pollution from the poor Gher district who use coal and wood to stay warm and cook.
Second post but same day..just catching up after very busy days shooting and finding my way around the city. The aim is to complete 2 or 3 stories that are all inter related but stand up in their own right as a story..pollution, ex soviet workers and street children..these pics are a few examples from each.
Workers walk into the city through thick smog. Pollution in Ulaan Baatar has made it one of the most polluted capital cities in the world.
A crumbling mosaic of Lenin. A reminder of what some older Mongolians say was a better life under Communist rule.
Many of the Soviet built tenement blocks have been left to decay and are now occupied by squatters. Nyamaa (30) who is blind and pregnant listens to the TV. She lives with her husband for free in this tiny room.
Men, woman & children working in sub zero conditions at the city rubbish dump on the outskirts of Ulaan Baatar. They recycle everything and earn approximately $2-$3 for a whole days work earning just enough to buy food for the family that day,
This is my first post on this site and what better place to post from than Ulaan Baatar..! I’m here on assignment to shoot a story for a Human Rights exhibition to be held in Jersey this June. More information about that in February when the schedule has been finalised but already lined up are some of the best photojournalists working today coming over to give presentations about Iraq & Afghanistan and some incredible documentary films..watch this space..!! I’ll be posting-time permitting-each day from here then a full story when I’ve returned..any comments appreciated
Shuree (6) cooling his soup served to him at the Mongolian Outreach Mission centre in Ulaan Baatar. Everyday over 150 woman and children from the poorest Gher area of the city stop for their only proper meal of the day.
Coal and wood burning fires for heating and cooking in the Gher district has made Ulaan Baatar one of the most polluted capital cities in the world.
With temperatures reaching below -30c at this time of year street children sleep in hot water pipe manholes offering some refuge from the freezing nights. The government are trying to stop this by sealing up the entrances but many children break the locks to gain access.
Alcohol abuse is a major problem in Mongolia with over 14% of men officially alcoholics. If not found by Police or Ngo's they could die within hours and many have lost fingers and toes to frostbite due to the extreme temperatures.