Children of Papua 2

Jessie T. Ponce Photography

I found them playing near the village center so I asked them to pose for the camera.  They were obviously terrified at first, some of them wanting to cry or run away. I had to reassure them with a big smile and recruited the help of the nearby adults to encourage them before I was able to get the photo below. I really liked the different emotions captured in both photos — proof that children never lie even in their facial expressions.

Jessie T. Ponce Photography

Take note that the structure behind the kids is the village’s primary school building — the only one in the village.  School buildings in remote villages of Papua New Guinea are typically made entirely of ‘bush materials’ gathered from the surrounding jungle.  The teacher usually comes from a faraway village and has to stay among the villagers for most of the school term.  Children wanting to get to secondary education have to travel great distances, often for several days, across the jungle to get to the nearest secondary school. Malnutrition is rampant among school kids.