Young Observer

Activism in photography

  • Turtle by Yndi-Amir Lottimore
  • Yndi-Amir Lottimore
  • Roll of honour by Adore Gibbons
  • Adore Gibbons questioning member of the public
  • Pigeon by Ruth Exell
  • Ruth Exell

The 2017 Youth Camera Action Introductory Level 1 and Intermediate Level 2 Summer Camp gave middle schools students aged 11-14 opportunities in developing their camera skills, leadership skills and learning creative strategies while developing a portfolio of images.

Since starting in 2009 in partnership with Family Centre, YCA has reached almost 1,500 students. YCA continues to partner with Family Centre and has, over the years, offered special programmes to Dellwood Middle school, Bermuda High School, and the Sunshine League Foundation, while offering teacher training to the Ministry of Education and Bermuda Union of Teachers.

From August 14-18, 2017, the YCA programme focused on the theme “Photographer as Activist” and students were encouraged to: explore the BNG exhibition Power of Art; various social issues and human rights locally and globally; study photographers and artists as activists; study photojournalism and creative writing; and create independent social projects using the camera as a tool to inspire their creative research processes.

Students were encouraged to select one social issue locally or globally that they were most passionate about to research and study during the week.

Thanks must be given to the following YCA counsellors for their involvement this summer: Ms Rhea Gibbons (YCA Senior Counselor); Junior counsellors Amy Palmer, Seth Malpas, Gabriel Smith, Mia Currin and Nahzai Lee.

If you have any comments or questions about the YCA Programme, please contact BNG education & communication officer Ms Dany Pen at or telephone 295-9428.

Yndi-Amir Lottimore

Topic: water crisis

Hello, my name is Yndi-Amir Lottimore and I am 12 years old. I have two brothers and one sister. I go to Clearwater Middle School and I enjoy riding my bike and playing with my PS4.

I chose this topic because when I go fishing or swimming I see trash and I thought: “Don’t some people get their water from the ocean and with all that trash in the ocean they won’t have any clean water”.

In the YCA Camp, my photography skills helped me to capture my social ideas because I can show everyone what is happening to our number-one need around the world. I decided to do a public questionnaire and I went around town asking people:

1. What do you think about the pollution in our water?

People replied with: “It’s terrible”, “it’s getting worse” and “pretty bad”.

2. What are ways you know of that we can save water in Bermuda?

People replied “less flushing”, and get “shorter showers”.

3. I then lastly asked, are you aware of the global water crisis?

85% of people said yes and 15% said no.

Fact: For Bermuda, the Sargasso Sea is “the golden rainforest of the ocean”. Within and below this drifting open-ocean habitat are hundreds of species of marine life including juvenile sea turtles, bizarre fishes and colourful shrimps.

— Dr Sylvia Earle

The bad news is that Nasa’s satellites are detecting that our fresh water levels are decreasing. The good news is that we have people making inventions to get clean and drinking water from air or from fog. The ideas I have for a solution is to tell people to stop throwing trash in the ocean, to pick up on the beaches and if you are snorkelling to pick up trash that fell to the bottom of the ocean.

Adore Gibbons

Topic: stop gun violence on our island

Hi, my name is Adore Gibbons and I am 11 years old. I have 3 sisters and 2 brothers and I go to Victor Scott Primary School. I like dancing hip-hop and ballet.

I chose this topic because gun violence is sad. It is killing young Bermudians and robbing them of their future. On July 19, 2017, Jahcari Francis was shot and killed on Upland Street in Devonshire. His murder was gang related and Premier Burt encouraged anyone with information to contact the police or crime-stoppers.


• 7-10 guns have been identified with the murders on the island.

• Guns are often seized in crimes.

• Guns are available to rent at a price to commit murders.

• All victims have been young Black Males.

• Up until June 2016, there have been 28 young men who have been murdered in the community.

During my time at YCA Summer Camp, I decided to ask the community the following questions:

1. Do you think that the killing can stop? 72% said yes and 28% person said no.

2. Do you like the violence? 89% people said no and 11% said yes.

3. Can we help the community stop the violence? 100 % said yes

4. What ways can the community help stop violence? People responded with:


Creating Programmes

Creating Support Networks

There is good news. On Tuesday, August 15, 2017, two men were pulled over by the police on St Mary’s Road in Warwick. The police found a gun, ammunition and a

controlled drug. Both men are in

police custody and the gun has been CONFISCATED.

Let’s stop gun violence and bring the community together and support those who have lost loved ones to gang violence.

Ruth Exell

Topic: Laws 4 Paws – Combating Animal Abuse

Hello! My name is Ruth Exell. I am 12 years old. I am attending Bermuda Centre for Creative Learning.

I have two dogs and a horse. My dogs’ names are Bentley and Noelle and my horse is Georgie. In my free time I like to ride my horse, swim, play with my dogs and take pictures.

I am writing to you about Animal Abuse. I feel that this subject does not get the attention that is needed. Animal Abuse is a real problem worldwide and there needs to be someone to speak up for them because they can’t speak in a way that we would understand.

People think that just because they’re not able to talk that they don’t have any feelings — but they are wrong. Animals do have feelings and they can talk, but we can’t understand them.

All that our pets want to do is please us and love us and make us smile. But they can’t do that when we hit them, yell at them and don’t give them food or water, when we just chain them up outside in the blistering heat.

These innocent animals have not done anything but love us and make us happy when we are sad. So why is it so hard for us to give them the rights that they deserve?

The recent article in the paper about the man who chained his dog to the ceiling got me mad. The punishments for such a crime are entirely inadequate.

He should never be able to own another animal forever, not even a fish.

A crime like this deserves a lot worse punishment than just a year in prison, a fine and being told he’s not allowed to own a dog for six years. Being a dog owner myself, that gets me mad.

The government should make a list of everyone who has ever abused an animal or killed one. And all the people who own pet shops or shelters or breed dogs should be mailed one of these and they should get updated every time a crime like this happens.

To keep our animals safe a team of animal care workers should go around the island and check on people who have registered dogs or cats. If they don’t register but they have one then they should go and investigate the house.

During my time at the YCA Summer Camp, I went around town and created a survey asking people:

1. Do you think animals have rights too?

100 % responded yes.

2. Do you think that animal

abusers should go to jail?

75% responded yes and

25% responded no.

I am happy to say that the SPCA have a few cats adopted into a nice and loving home. But the sad part about humans is that we ADORE baby animals and not so much older animals.

This is what hurts the most when it comes to animals. I love all ages of animals! All animals should be treated equally. No matter how old, fat or how skinny they are.

I am considering adopting a cat from the SPCA, but the catch is that I am going to get the oldest cat there so that she can have a loving home where she can spend the rest of her furry life in. That’s what all animals want. A forever home. And that’s what I’m going to do.

Being in the YCA Summer Camp, helped me to raise awareness of animal abusers and to help speak for animals. It also lets me tell people of what I feel about animals being abused.

So, what I’m trying to say is please only love animals. Don’t hate. If you cannot take care of your animal, then please just give it to the SPCA where they can help find a loving forever home for it.

Love animals don’t hate.