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U.Va. Exhibit on Issues of Health and Water in South Africa Closes Sept. 3 with Reception

August 26, 2009 — "Water & Health | Photovoice," a photo exhibit in the University of Virginia's Newcomb Hall Art Gallery that gives pictures and voice to inhabitants' perceptions related to water and health conditions in a rural South African village, will close Sept. 3 with a reception, from 7 to 8 p.m., to celebrate the project.

The reception, free and open to the public, will include a presentation updating the project with a presentation of new pictures and discussion from fieldwork conducted there this summer.

The exhibit's photographs, taken by residents of Limpopo, South Africa, reveal their insights about water, health and sustainability. Many of the villagers live in traditional mud huts with straw roofs, called roundavels, and exist on subsistence farming. Life is physically hard, and diseases of poverty and incidence of HIV are high.

The project was a community-based, participatory research endeavor led by U.Va. and the University of Venda, designed to empower villagers by combining photography with grassroots social action.

The photographs provided the project participants an avenue to begin community discussions about water and health issues.

For information, contact Tim Cunningham at 434-249-2354 or tdc8h@virginia.edu.

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