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    Photographer Ismail Ferdous Commissioned By Meero Foundation To Cover War In Ukraine

    Photographer Ismail Ferdous Commissioned By Meero Foundation To Cover War In Ukraine

    As a hub for expression, diversity, solidarity, and the sharing of human values, The Meero Foundation has commissioned Ismail Ferdous to document the everyday lives of Ukrainian refugees in their country and beyond its boundaries during the war.

    Recently awarded top honors by the World Press Photo Foundation, photographer Ismail Ferdous has been commissioned by the startup’s philanthropic photojournalism program to document the daily lives of Ukrainian refugees since the beginning of the conflict.

    As a hub for expression, diversity, solidarity, and the sharing of human values, The Meero Foundation has commissioned Ismail Ferdous to document the everyday lives of Ukrainian refugees in their country and beyond its boundaries during the war.

    Specializing in social and humanitarian issues and represented by Agence VU’, Ferdous is a documentary photographer who won the World Press Photo Award 2022 for a photo story entitled “The People Who Feed the United States.” It was selected as the North & Central America regional winner for Picture Story.

    The photography magazine Blind, funded by the Meero Foundation, has published the following of Ferdous’s reports on Ukraine so far: “On the Road Into Exile: Through the Eyes of Ukrainian Refugees”, “The Daily Lives of the Ukrainians Displaced by War”, “People of Ukraine.” Blind will continue regularly releasing Ismail Ferdous’ photographs of Ukraine this month, alongside other photographers who have sent their work for publication.

    Since March 1st, Ferdous has been traveling around Ukraine and nearby countries to capture the experiences of these refugees. Ferdous’ documentary photography shows the brutal reality of people forced to flee their homes and brings human context to these war stories for those scrolling through the 24/7 news cycle and hearing about the violence at a distance.

    Ferdous left New York by plane on February 28 to travel to Krakow via Warsaw, Poland. From Krakow, he took the train to Przemysl station, a rallying point for journalists and photographers, but also the first place of transition for Ukrainian refugees. Ferdous then traveled to Slovakia and western Ukraine, specifically the border region of Transcarpathia, to continue the project.

    The UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) has indicated that more than 4 million Ukrainian refugees have already fled to neighboring countries. This number is increasing day by day. 6.5 million people find themselves displaced within the borders of Ukraine and have had to abandon their homes for other regions away from the fighting. The UNHCR estimates over 10 million people have been forced to leave their homes since the war began.

    Upon arrival, Ferdous had the impression:

    “that [he] was arriving in a different world.” “It was crazy,” he said, “I didn’t think I was in Europe.”

    ”It is our responsibility as a company, and the goal of the Meero Foundation, to support those creating visual content to bring positive change and raise awareness,” said Thomas Rebaud, Meero’s CEO. “We are honored that such a talented and recognized photographer as Ismail Ferdous felt the same urge as we did to tell the stories of Ukrainians, without complacency but with dignity and as humanely as we can.”

    The evolution of technology has always transformed humanity’s behavior and our perception of the world. Working in a time of digital images — with new modes of expression, communication, and socialization — creates new challenges for creators.

    Images are now captured, edited, and shared everywhere under every circumstance imaginable. But with such a high volume of content, are we still able to appreciate them and feel their impact? Visual artists have always been on the forefront of capturing the contemporary challenges that people face around the world, from the conservation of our natural environment to the fight against poverty and discrimination to the necessity of access to health care and education. In this “Age of the Image,” we believe that there is still much more that visual imagery can do to help make the world a better place.

    The Meero Foundation aims to give back to photographers, both professional and amateur. The foundation provides expertise and awareness to help photographers create greater impact with their visual stories and stand out in our oversaturated visual culture. We hope to continue as a trusted partner for photographers looking to find deeper artistic purpose and ultimately define the role they want to play as visual storytellers.

    Through our innovation-driven grants, we encourage and enable the recipients to define the creative processes of tomorrow and tell impactful stories that will drive positive social change. We see the Meero Foundation as a hub for expression, diversity, solidarity, the sharing of human values, and as a perpetual visual laboratory… all in alignment with Meero’s values.

    Ismail Ferdous is a Bangladeshi photographer and filmmaker, born in 1989, member of the VU’ Agency since 2021, based in New York (USA). While studying business at East West University in Dhaka, Ismail Ferdous began to seriously consider photography as a profession. He undertook numerous trips around the world, through Asia, Europe, and the American continent, to train on the ground.

    Ferdous set out to document, through photography and video, the social and humanitarian issues of the contemporary world. After the collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory in Dhaka, one of the worst industrial disasters in Bangladesh, which caused the death of more than 1100 workers in 2013, he worked with The Cost of Fashion and After Rana Plaza to create a plea against the devastating effects of the fast fashion industry on the Bangladeshi population.

    In parallel with his personal documentary projects, Ferdous has collaborated with NGOs, media, and press organizations to produce reports on climate change, natural disasters (earthquake in Nepal), access to healthcare (HIV), and the refugee crisis (in Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, the Mediterranean Sea, France, and Bangladesh). At the end of 2016, he left Dhaka and moved to New York, where he continues his work and reports on the end of Trump’s presidency, among other subjects.

    Ferdous is the winner of numerous prestigious awards — including two US National Photo Press Awards, the Manuel Ortiz Award for Documentary Photography, and the National Geographic Explorer Grant — and his work is regularly published in the international press and exhibited around the world, notably at Photoville (NYC, USA), at the United Nations Headquarters (Geneva), at the Photolux Festival (Lucca, Italy), at the Tokyo Photograph Art Museum (Japan) and at the Rencontres d’Arles (France).

    Founded in 2016, Meero’s mission is to contribute to the world of photography by giving photographers the opportunity to dedicate themselves entirely to their passion. From generating additional revenue to client prospecting, invoicing, and payments to post-production and delivery, Meero facilitates careers for creatives while taking care of all the time-consuming tasks that can slow down their daily work.

    Meero is the go-to solution for both creative business management tools and inspiring educational content. With Meero, photographers have access to not only a wide range of accounting, CRM systems, and marketing tools, but also a growing list of masterclasses, technical tutorials, inspiring documentaries, photographer meet-ups across 35 countries, a bi-lingual magazine, and a foundation to support photography.

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