8 hours ago
Photo by @gabrielegalimbertiphoto
/// natacha, 29 – port-au-prince, haiti - natacha's principal occupation is doing good. the form her good deeds take is fitting in her tormented homeland, where she fights a daily battle to give her country's children a future. natacha, who was orphaned when she was only a few months old and raised in an institute for foundling children, understands their plight. her life changed when, at the age of five, she was long-distance adopted by a german family. it was the beginning of a life-long journey made possible by their material and psychological support. in the beginning it was almost impossible to communicate with her new "family." in order to be able to speak with her german “parents,” natacha set herself to study english. after just a few years they were having long conversations every day. her long-distance “father" encouraged her to continue her studies and, eventually, she became a teacher at a montessori children's school, where she learned the ropes of her profession. a few years later, in love with her work and determined to devote herself entirely to children, natacha, with the financial backing of her german family, was able to build her own school. it is in martissant, an unsavory neighborhood of port-au-prince controlled by gangs, but everyone here knows natacha and respects her. the terrible 2010 earthquake destroyed part of her school, burying some of the children and teachers beneath the rubble. it was a terrible tragedy but, confident in the support of her german parents, she decided to rebuild. every day she takes in orphans and gives them a chance. it was with them that she wanted to be photographed for my project about @couchsurfing.
her entire life, not just her work, seems to hinge on helping others. her house is home to an apparently permanent encampment of penniless journalists, determined to tell haiti's stories but without money for hotels. when i was there, it was in the company of 5 other couchsurfers. her home is an old villa perched on a hillside in delmas, with a view over the whole of the city. she shares it with a girlfriend – and with occasional couchsurfers! #haiti #children