The Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Photography Award (HIPA) has announced that it sent members of its team to undertake in a corporate social responsibility in various remote islands in Malaysia earlier this year. The initiative involved interaction with the nomadic Bajau Laut communities in Eastern Malaysia who often live in small communities off the shore of small islands.

image The Secretary General of HIPA, HE Ali bin Thalith in Malaysia / Courtesy of HIPA

The Secretary General of HIPA, His Excellency Ali bin Thalith commented that "This initiative was undertaken to try and have a positive influence on the lives of those who are less fortunate through the art of photography.” "The HIPA team traveled to 4 islands in Eastern Malaysia and those were Mataking, Gaya, Silakan and Maiga. The team got to learn more about the local traditions and culture of the local population as well learning first hand of the struggles the sea nomads experience on a daily basis through living in such a remote part of the world." Bin Thalith continued, "The HIPA team shared the power of photography with the people of the 4 islands by handing out cameras and teaching the children of the islands how to use them, which had a positive impact on everyone involved. For us, the HIPA team, it was a pleasure using our beloved art form (photography) in such a way that brought us closer to the inhabitants of the islands who welcomed us in as family. We are glad that we were able to positively impact the Bajau-laut people in such a way by using photography and we hope to be able to carry out similar initiatives in the future."

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