Monthly Archives

February 2013

Daily Bread

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Dailiy Bread

– By Lee Stubis, CX Traveler

“The aroma of baking bread greeted us as our Culture Xplorers group entered the small room where Luciano was already busy pulling paddles of golden, round loaves of bread from the large wood-burning stove into baskets. Once all these hand-crafted loaves were in baskets, Luciano would deliver them to restaurants in the Douro Valley region of Portugal.

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Photo Contest 2012 Winner – e Bond

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Congratulations to the e Bond, Winner of the The 2012 Positive Impact Photo Contest!


LOCATION: Hoi An (Vietnam), 2010

STORY: Meet my friend Mai. We met while he was participating in a workshop I was teaching on behalf of the Lifestart Foundation. I was in Vietnam to teach handmade books, but somehow about halfway through it became evident that Mai was actually an amazing painter. Once discovered, we created a new project and since then he has been making beautiful hand painted hats. Mai’s life, like mine, was forever changed by that encounter. Each time I travel I learn just how much I don’t know about everything and how exciting it is to gather new information.

Photo Contest 2012 – Chris Sorenson

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  • “Home Sweet Home”
  • LOCATION: Phnom Penh (Cambodia), 2012
  • STORY: I recently traveled to Cambodia to volunteer with Empowering Youth in Cambodia (EYC – I was invited to visit a student’s home located in a poor community on the outskirts of Phnom Penh.  The girl in the photo had been spending a lot of time taking care of her little brother. Just three days before this photo was taken, her mother gave birth to another child.  This little place is now home to 6 people.

Photo Contest 2012 – Rob Whitworth

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  • “Openness”
  • LOCATION: Marble Mountain, Da Nang (Vietnam), 2011
  • STORY: For a few shorts hours each the morning a beam of light slowly moves across Huyen Khong cave nestled deep in Marble Mountain. A steady stream of domestic tourists, monks, foreign travellers and Buddhist worshippers make their visits throughout the day each taking away something different from the experience.

Photo Contest 2012 – Zach McDuffie

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  • “O Gaucho”
  • LOCATION: Border of Brazil & Uruguay, 2011
  • STORY: This is a photo from the most remote trip I’ve taken to the border of Brazil and Uruguay, for a festival called Semana Faropilha, the largest gathering of gauchos every year. It was like stepping out of a time machine into the wild west era, except gauchos dress like a mix of cowboy and pirate. It was so rare for an American photographer to be there that they interviewed me on the farm radio and for the newspaper, and I was guest of honor at several of the gatherings I went to. This photo was taken of a gaucho at one of the parties. After taking the picture I joined him for a beer and he told me all about his gaucho life. .

Photo Contest 2012 – Sandra Long

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  • “Giving A Hands Up”
  • LOCATION: Punta Gorda farming village, (Belize), 2010
  • STORY: This Sustainable Harvest International project of building a more fuel efficient and health producing stove was a team project of volunteers and local families. After successful working together we enjoyed visiting over a family prepared traditional lunch. In addition, we educated about sustainable practices and planted cacao bushes, supporting a fledgling chocolate making industry as well as eliminating need to “slash and burn” forest cover. This was a life changing experience for my great grandson and myself as well as for the local farmers.

Photo Contest 2012 – Tessa Guze

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  • “Pinky & Sapna”
  • LOCATION: Jaipur (India), 2010
  • STORY: In 2010 I taught in a slum in India. The people in this slum worked hard but had very little. Our school was the space between two buildings with a tarp tied over it to keep the sun out. No chairs, not desks, no books. This was the closest thing my students had ever known to school. This is a picture of two of my students, Pinky and Sapna. They were always eager and engaged. Both girls were the oldest child and spent most of their time caring for younger siblings, yet somehow managed to remain wonderful students.

Photo Contest 2012 – Susanne Long

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  • “Connectivity”
  • LOCATION: Kalaw, Myanmar (Burma), 2010
  • STORY: I was sitting outside a pagoda in a small Burmese mountain town and a small group of young monks, interested to find out what I was doing, gathered round. I found a bicycle trick video taken from YouTube to show them. More monks started to appear until there was a group of eight or nine. They stayed with me until a bell rang when they thanked me and headed inside for lessons.

Photo Contest 2012 – Lois Brassart

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  • “Boys At Play”
  • LOCATION: Small village in Turkey, 2011
  • STORY: On our travels to Turkey we spent time in small rural villages connecting with local people. The children were amazing and went about their business ignoring our cameras.  Language was not a barrier; we truly felt a heart connection we were often invited into homes for tea, offered fresh walnuts, and left loaded down with roasted seeds and apples. I came upon these two boys as they were ready to knock a rock off the top of a wall. I love the intensity of the companion of the sling shot owner; he really wonders if his friend will be successful.

Photo Contest 2012 – Anne Laszlo

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  • “A Picture Builds a Thousand Bridges”
  • LOCATION: Concepcion (Guatemala), 2010
  • STORY: I toured Guatemala with Culture Xplorers. We traveled to Concepcion, a highland village where we were shyly welcomed. I took many pictures, but one especially captured the gentle spirit of the villagers. Perfect for my 2011 calendar (September) I was creating! I returned to Guatemala (2011) and learned there was another Concepcion visit. Wonderful! I would present the villagers with their own calendar. It was an amazing experience: families crowded around their September picture, pointing, giggling, amid joyful shouts when they spied their faces. A  bridge of community, friendship and respect had been constructed.