National Geographic Photo Camp to Mentor Refugee Students in Shenandoah National Park

WASHINGTON (Oct. 14, 2016)—A group of participants from the Baltimore City Community College Refugee Youth Project (RYP) will learn to tell their stories through photography and writing during National Geographic Photo Camp (NGPC) Shenandoah National Park, Oct. 20-23. The camp, to be held in Shenandoah National Park, is a partnership between the National Geographic Society, the RYP and the Out of Eden Walk.

National Geographic photographers John Stanmeyer and Amy Toensing will serve as mentors for the 18 participants, ages 15-20, who have resettled in Baltimore, Maryland from countries including Congo, Myanmar, Bhutan, Nigeria, Eritrea and Iraq. As part of the Photo Camp, the students will hike a portion of the Appalachian Trail in Shenandoah National Park and connect with National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Paul Salopek as he walks around the world on the Out of Eden Walk, his journey to retrace the path of ancient human migration.

The goal of the four-day workshop is to introduce the participants to the power of photography through visual storytelling and to encourage the students to share their own journeys, adding their voices to the stories about global migrations being witnessed in the world today. The students’ final multimedia presentation will be shown on Sunday, Oct. 23 at 3 p.m. at Skyland Lodge in Shenandoah National Park in Luray, Virginia.

“National Geographic believes in the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to change the world. We have found that Photo Camp inspires a new generation of storytellers as well as the members of the community who view their work,” said ​Kaitlin Yarnall, National Geographic​ Society​’s ​Deputy Director of the Centers of Excellence. “We hope Photo Camp Shenandoah National Park will provide the participants from the Baltimore City Community College Refugee Youth Project with a creative outlet to share their unique perspectives and an opportunity to engage with National Geographic in new ways.”

Since 2003, National Geographic Photo Camp has provided programs for more than 1,500 young people in more than 70 locations. Olympus Imaging America Inc. has supplied cameras for the Photo Camp. RYP was also founded in 2003 and since then, the organization has provided after school, summer school, community arts and mentoring programs for more than 300 students from more than 17 different countries.

For more information on recent Photo Camps in Montana, Ukraine, South Sudan and Jordan, visit:

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/photography/proof/2016/07/photo-camp-montana/

http://proof.nationalgeographic.com/2015/09/30/the-story-of-losing-a-homeland-through-the-eyes-of-those-living-it/

http://proof.nationalgeographic.com/2015/01/12/peace-building-with-cameras-in-south-sudan/

http://proof.nationalgeographic.com/2015/04/21/life-through-the-lens-of-syrias-uprooted-teens/

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