We were delighted to welcome Alice Aedy (Class of 2012), activist, documentary photographer, and film-maker to speak at the closing assembly of Challenge Your Limits Week 2020.
Alice spoke about her journey from a volunteer at a refugee camp to photo-journalist and how she uses photography to capture the effect of climate change on the world’s most vulnerable communities. Alice shared ‘after graduating I thought I would volunteer in a migrant camp for two days, three months later I found myself still in a camp helping cook 7,000 meals a day’.
After taking her first pictures in the Art studios at Godolphin and having always imagined becoming a war photographer, Alice took her camera to the migrant camps. Her objective was to humanise the people she met so that they weren’t just a statistic in a newspaper headline and to capture their personal stories, an element that was always overlooked in the media. Alice remembers ‘I felt I had no right to photograph these people in such desperate times but people were so willing to share their stories with me’
After battling with self-doubt for a year, Alice shared the images on her hard drive and her photo of a young Syrian refugee appeared on the publication’s front page, for the most successful fundraising campaign for child refugee’s in the Guardian’s history. Four years on and a full time photo-journalist Alice explains ‘I really get to know them –the camera is now constantly around my neck, it helps me forge real relationships with these individuals’.
Alice shared ‘I had no interest in recycling, geography or environmental issues when I was at school but my creativity was nurtured at Godolphin and the principles of social injustices and inequality that Mr Davis taught me have impacted me greatly’.
Alice is now a fervent activist and a member of Extinction Rebellion, she explained to pupils how ‘climate change isn’t just about graphs, polar bears and melting ice caps, it is about human life and humanity itself’. ‘Yes there are moments of self-doubt but it’s about having confidence and doing what’s right, daring to care’. She asked us all ‘whether you want to be a lawyer, journalist or artist – how will you use your passion to shape this new world in a way that’s so urgently needed?’
This was a tremendously inspiring assembly from Alice and we look forward to following her career as she continues to Dare to Care!