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Kate Holt Photographer
Nichole Sobecki
Alex Webb/Rebecca Norris Webb
World Press Photo Foundation

He started walking in the dark. Since some time now he lives on his own, despite the risk that comes with it. Every morning Flavian Mwitumba takes the 40 min walk to his parents to help his father in the fields. He always starts early to avoid the harsh sun, that is burns his skin in minutes. During the hours around noon, he rests in the shade before getting on with work until its dark. Flavian is an albino and the lack of pigment in his skin, directly burns his skin and also makes his vision really bad in bright sunlight. His sister, also an albino, who has to get home from school around lunchtime, can hardly see the last minutes of her walk home because of the sun. For Flavian its easier as he has more control over when he is in the sun and how he can avoid it, but it still affects him severely. . . . . . #everydayafrica #humansandhabitats #dynamicafrica #wandermore #neverstopexploring #albinism #documentaryphoto #photojournalism at Tanzania


I could hear the singing from afar. I crossed the small river and hiked straight up to the building a bit higher on the hill. The day was cloudy again, like on so many other days here, but there had been no rain, so they took water from the river up to water the clay and then press it into the form. After that the clay gets burned to create the bricks. But as I arrive some of the women stop, laugh and then sing even louder. I still tend to forget sometimes, that I’m the outsider here, visible from afar to everyone. So they look at me exactly like that, enjoying my visit, dancing and singing, while my translator explains me what is going on. Half an hour later everyone starts forgetting about me and just accepting that I’m there. And that is, when I slowly can start working, silently moving around, taking my pictures. If I learned one thing over the years, its that embracing the moment and always give things time and build connections is the only way to get real and personal in situations like that. . . . . . #documentaryphotographer #reportage #natgeoadventure #humansandhabitats #storytellers #staycurious #neverstopexploring #everydayafrica at Rwanda


The contrast is quite surprising. From the big, high halls, that house the rebuilds of the capsules of the spaceships and the training replica of the International Space Station, we get into a small room. Alexander Gerst and his fellow cosmonaut are already getting ready for todays mission training, taking on their spacesuits to train under as real conditions as possible for their upcoming space mission. A few days before we had come to this obscure place out in the woods, some hours from Moscow. In the Cold War, they build a whole small town in the woods, to house the secret Russian space program. It did not show up on any map and is until today surrounded by security walls and checkpoints. It is winter and -15 degrees, everything feels a bit like time travel 30 years back in time. But what happens here is very real. Today the cosmonauts from Russia, the US and Europe train here together for their space missions. The cosmonauts are ready now. In their heavy suits, they walk slowly to the capsules, squeeze themselves into the tight seats and then start their training program for hours. Today they try to dock at the ISS. And while ground station today is only a few meters away, the training is as real as it gets. All with the purpose that as Alexander describes it: “Make it all feel familiar and easy, when you are on the real mission.” . . . . . #humansandhabitats #newfrontiers #spacetravel #natgeo #natgeoyourshot #photojournalism #becurious #exploremore #neverstopexploring #space #russia at Swjosdny Gorodok


Its just a small sign, but it leads to the big changes that are going on here. I’m looking at the dried out riverbed, that should be filled with meltwater that time of the year. But there is nothing. We had been hiking for two days to get up here. We are high up on Mount Kenya, on the way to the final camp before our summit push the next day. One of the reasons we got up here, is to see first hand, how climate change, the rising temperatures and the melting glacier affects the area and the people here. Since temperatures have been rising the area had a massive increase in cases of malaria, that before seldom happened and the reduction of meltwater from the glacier has a direct effect for the small farmers that simply lose the access to the water they need, while the bigger farms with more money and power just get the water that is left. A topic like climate change is often grand and difficult to grasp, talked about in spectacular scenarios and pictures, but here it becomes possible to see, how small changes can have big effects for everyone. The next morning, from the summit, I look down to the small piece of ice that once was the glacier and I wonder how long it will take, until nothing is left of it and what that will mean for everyone. . . . . . #humansandhabitats #climatechangeisreal #climatechange #photojournalism #storytellers #reportage #ourplanet #discoverearth #natgeoyourshot #natgeo #documentaryphotographer at Mount Kenya


When his dad lifts him out of the stable that is his home for most of the day and puts him into the dusty wheelchair, Denis body starts trembling with excitement. He looks into the sky, follows the clouds, laughs and then dives back into his own world. He tries to move the wheelchair and even when it is obvious that he has the physical capabilities to do so, no one has ever tried to teach him. His parents just lock the wheels in fear he might end up crashing somewhere, when they don’t look after him. But it is still better than the days he spends in the stable, locked away, left on his own. His parents do that both to protect him as well as to make sure he does not get out and injures himself, while they are out looking for work. Denis is disabled and like that poses a great burden for his parents. For them finding work as daily labourers is the only way to bring food on the table, so they see locking him away for the day as the only solution to be able to take care of him as painful as it might be. Some stories are messy and complex and sad and without easy solutions. . . . . . #humansandhabitats #natgeo #natgeoyourshot #ourplanet #everydayafrica #reportage #storytellers #reportagespotlight #documentaryphotographer at Kenya


What do you teach your children? I guess every parent thinks about that earlier or later. One of the principles that I try to live by is experiences over things and learning over knowing / questions over answers. The more I can expose my kids to the world we live in, the better. Thats why we travel with them as much as possible and they have in their short lives maybe seen more of the world than I had when I was 20. I believe that exposing them to as much diversity this world has to offer, the more that grows a curiosity and connection in them for the world around them. And that hopefully will guide them through the rest of their lives. But you can’t always go to exotic places, so one of the first things we did, was getting yearly tickets for the zoo. And it might not be the same as the experience I wrote about yesterday, but still I can see it in their eyes and how they talk about it, that it helps build this connection and curiosity. In that spirit: Did you know that the giraffes pattern is like a fingerprint? There are not two that have the same. Something I learned some days ago. And now I have a thousand new questions… . . . . . #humansandhabitats #parenting #ourplanet #exploremore #becurious #natgeoadventure #discoverglobe #neverstopexploring #neverstoplearning #natgeoyourshot #wildlifeplanet at Copenhagen Zoo København Zoo


I was never into the idea of safaris. Every time I was on one, I felt like being in the zoo, just on the other side, chasing around a park to find the animals, often with many other cars, doing the same thing. But then you get a different experience and it is just magical. In Swaziland there is a small national park and due to the absence of dangerous animals (beside the crocodiles), you can hike freely through the park. One afternoon we came along a group of Zebras who were grassing and resting in the open plains. Without disturbing them, I slowly walked towards them. Always some meters, before I sat down again. Sometimes they looked at me, but then focused on something else again. And the longer I sat in the high grass, the closer they came towards me, simply ignoring me. And while I was sitting there, just a few meters from them at the end, the sun was setting and I could not help myself, but being in awe for this experience. . . . . . #humansandhabitats #wildlifeplanet #wildlifeonearth #ourplanet #exploremore #roamtheplanet #discoverglobe #natgeo #natgeowildlife #natgeoyourshot #neverstopexploring at Swaziland


This might be the closest to walking on Mars, I thought. The cold wind blasting in my face and the landscape desolate and otherworldly. There is steam coming up from the ground and the sun shines through the misty atmosphere. Up here we find one of the geothermal power plants, that produce roughly one fourth of Icelands electricity and 87% of the countries need for warm water and heating. Because of the high density of volcanic activity on the island, it is easier to take advantage of the geothermal energy. Walking around here is like being on another planet and unlike anything else, I know, with the small metal igloos that cover the boreholes and the pipes that run through the the landscape, connecting the boreholes over kilometres with the power plant further down the valley. . . . . . #humansandhabitats #everydayenergy #natgeoyourshot #natgeoadventure #roamtheplanet #discoverglobe #sustainableenergy #climatechange #inspiredbyiceland #everydayiceland #documentaryphoto at Krafla Lava Fields, Myvatn


I adored the morning light that was coming through the window of our hut. Some zebras were roaming around just outside the compound area, an ostrich tried to snitch a banana through the open window and I finally felt like its time to breath. There are those places, where you feel it is easy to unplug from the world and just be in the moment. This was one of those places for me. Where do you go to unplug? . . . . . #everydayafrica #humansandhabitats #roamtheplanet #visualstoryteller #reportage #safari #discoverglobe #natgeoyourshot #natgeoadventure at Swaziland


Our tent was just a hundred meters from where the fishermen pulled their canoes out of the river, the kids played soccer and climbed the trees - and the elephants roamed in the morning. The day before we had come here on the back of some bicycles with some local boys, that showed us the small lodge/ tent site just outside the park. It took just a short walk or trip with the boat to get into the park, but since the lodge was started out here, the elephants had walked down the fence and casually roamed around the area. When they came, everyone climbed in the trees to watch them and not disturb them, before they again disappeared in the bushes. That afternoon tough, they were somewhere else and we spend hours in the soft evening sun, playing with the kids soccer and doing tree climbing competitions. Only to hear the heavy steps outside our tent in the night again, when the elephants returned. It was a magical time. . . . . . #humansandhabitats #wondermore #neverstopexploring #natgeoyourshot #natgeoadventure #everydayafrica #visualstoryteller #roamtheplanet #discoverglobe at Malawi


I met this guy almost everyday while working in this village in rural Tanzania, but we never got to really talk. That morning, where I finally visited him, I was supposed to take the early bus, that comes once a week. But plans changed. To give you some context: Ten days before I had come here after five hours of minibuses, pickup trucks and some walking. When we arrived in the night, there was no light, no electricity. The only places with power was the church with some solar panels and a guy who somehow got himself a small solar panel as well, that basically powered all cellphones in the village. So life was quite remote and slow paced. While we waited for the bus that morning something happened and the bus did not show up, and while we all waited in the pitch dark, slowly one by one, people left again to their homes. "Maybe tomorrow", they said. So I had a full extra day and went for a hike up the hills. On my way back I passed by his house and he directly invited me in. The joy of travelling and putting yourself out there. . . . . . #humansandhabiats #everydayafrica #natgeoyourshot #natgeoadventure #theglobewanderer #visualstoryteller #wondermore #documentaryphotographer at Tanzania


He was standing on the wall, watching his mum making food over the open fire, pretending to ignore my presence. I had come here on an assignment to photograph and record stories of beneficiaries for the Medical Relief Alliance. The village, I was at, was dotted over lush green hills in the south of Kenya and the people here Massai, but differently than in the past, they did not live as pastoralists anymore, but instead settled down here, due to changes in livelihoods. And while the food was getting ready, his mum Emily Kingasunye called him, to show her what he had learned in school that day. He came back with a big smile and his textbooks, still in his school uniform, proudly showing his mum the exercises he had made this morning, secretly peaking at me from time to time with a shy but goofy grin. . . . . . #everydayafrica #theglobewanderer #humansandhabitats #visualstoryteller #storytellers #discoverglobe #roamtheplanet #natgeoadventure #natgeoyourshot at Kenya


After two days of hiking we set up our tents close to a small village, sheltered behind a small hill. Above us we could see the mountains dipping in the last light of the day, strangely coloured in white and red tones, before even higher up the snow started. I walked a bit out, breathing slow and deep due to the altitude of more than 4000 meters. Or was just just the view that took my final breath away? While hiking deep into the Himalaya, I could not feel anything except awe for the beauty our planet offers. And as hard as the climbing was at the beginning, the more I got used to the altitude, the more I woke up excited and energised every morning to what was laying in front of me that day. . . . . . #ourplanet #roamtheplanet #humansandhabitats #exploremore #wondermore #discoverglobe #theglobalwanderer at Ladakh, India


The air had been hot and dry most of the day, but now, where the sun was going down, life seemed to come back. The kids were playing soccer on a field with a old patched up ball, the farmers sat down for a chat with their peers and I took off for a walk around the area. Here in Northern Malawi, close to the Tanzanian border, life was slower and harder due to the dry and hot climate. Little development aid reaches that region and people normally are quite tough in adapting to the conditions. Yet I loved the openness and friendliness I encountered everywhere. I turned around the corner to get back to the one road that was running north to the border, when I passed by her house. When she saw me, she directly waved at me and we started chatting with hands and feet, without speaking each other language. She asked me to make a picture of her, proudly standing there, constantly smiling. And I could not leave differently than with a smile on my face as well, when I said my farewells and headed off again. . . . . . #humansandhabitats #wondermore #stayadventurous #exploremore #storytellers #visualstoryteller #theglobalwanderer #neverstopexploring #everydayafrica #reportagespotlight #natgeoadventure at Karonga, Malawi


My eyes and mouth wide open, I could not believe the magic that was unfolding in front of my eyes. I was six years old and on the old black and white TV that my parents still had at that time, I saw the TV series 'Nonni and Manni' that played in a land far away, full of magic, vulcanos and wild nature. Back then I asked my parents if we could go there, but it would take 20 years before I actually got here, fullfilling my earliest childhood dream that I can remember. This place was Iceland. Today, when I think back to that, I believe that day, in front of the TV is where my wanderlust started and that never left me again. Today I have been to Iceland many times, but the magic of the place persists. And last week, when I took my children there for the first time, seeing the same awe and wonder in their eyes that I felt as a young boy, it reminded me, how special this place always will be. . . . . . #liveofadventure #humansandhabitats #exploremore #documentaryphoto #travelvibes #travelgrams #theglobalwanderer #stayadventurous #storytellers #visualstoryteller #inspiredbyiceland #everydayiceland at Landmannalaugar


We walked around Fort Jesus, once build by the Portuguise to build influence in the Indian Ocean. The never went much inland or established any bigger trade in Kenya. Instead used the coastline harbors as their trading route. Now you could feel those influences in Mombasa in the buildings and it's historical structure. But now, where once the guards stood, people where hanging out, some boys had build a workout circle and some tourists walked around, taking selfies with the old cannons. Fort Jesus today is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and still makes you travel back in time easily, just with a few added modern use cases. . . . . . #humansandhabitats  #travelvibes  #travelgrams #visualstoryteller  #travelingphotographer  #stayadventurous  #storytellers  #exploremore #theglobalwanderer at Fort Jesus


It's early in Khayelitsha, one of the biggest townships in Capetown, South Africa. To the sun hasn't risen when we get up to join the students to school. And while the morning might be still young, the township is fully alive. Everytime I stayed in slums or townships overnight or arrived very early, this is my favorite time of the day. And while we walk towards the school, the morning mist slowly lifts and the sun breaks through for this unbelievable morning light, that is so unique to Capetown, for another day of hope, dreams, fights, struggle and lots of hard work. . . . . . #discoverglobe #roamtheplanet #liveofadventure #humansandhabitats #exploremore #documentaryphoto #travelvibes #travelgrams #theglobalwanderer #stayadventurous #storytellers #visualstoryteller at Khayelitsha


He finished his Fanta with a big smile, put it down, said farwell and slowly started walking home. This had been his routine for a while now after work. John was already 92, when I met him, but still working fulltime as a security guard at a small primary school. His physical appearance still young and strong, with a mind fresh and full of childish humor. I seldom left as inpired by a person as I was by him. #humansandhabitats  #travelvibes  #travelgrams #visualstoryteller  #travelingphotographer  #stayadventurous  #storytellers  #exploremore #theglobalwanderer at Malawi

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