URC Staff Wins Adaptation Fund Photo Contest

June 4, 2014

Caroline Schaer from the UNEP Risø Centre has won the third prize in the photo contest organized by the Adaptation Fund for her photo capturing the densely populated area of Pikine in Dakar, Senegal.

The Adaptation Fund organized the photo contest on the theme ‘Visualizing climate adaptation and resilience’. Illustrating this theme in urban areas added an extra layer of creative interpretation to the 2013-2014 photo contest. There were a total of 136 photos entries from 17 countries, spanning the globe from Bangladesh to Brazil, Mexico to South Africa.

A panel of four distinguished judges narrowed down through the entries, and selected Gina Meneses’ shot of schoolchildren rowing to school in their flooded city of Pampanga, Philippines as the winner of the first prize.

Winning the third prize, Caroline’s photo titled ‘Household affected by recurrent flooding in peri-urban areas’ depicts Pikine, a densely populated area situated at the periphery of Dakar, Senegal.

As Caroline describes, ‘The area is characterized by the closeness of habitations, insecure tenure, primitive shacks and critical infrastructure and state services such as waste management, sanitation, water etc. which are at best unsatisfactory and at worst inexistent. The installation in these hazardous environments is for many considered a necessary compromise for affordable housing close to work opportunities, which are deficient of essential services and unsafe. Poor households living in the area are severely impacted by an increase in frequency, duration and intensity of rainfall, which engenders recurrent flooding and is expected to be exacerbated by climate change. Their homes, livelihoods and health are at risk as flooding aggravates already precarious living conditions and creates a vicious circle, which for many families is impossible to escape. The impacts of flooding in Pikine, thereby, clearly bring to light the environmental and social inequalities that characterize these areas and the many challenges ahead.’

The second prize was won by Phoebelyn Gullunan whose photo depicts the ‘Tambobong’ or the roofed ox cart in the Philippines as a mobile retail store. It is loaded with local handicraft products manufactured by peasants to augment their income from farming where they travel and sell their wares within the urban areas.

The Adaptation Fund finances projects and programmes to help developing countries adapt to the negative effects of climate change.Read more about the photo contest here.