Created by the nonprofit Mountain2Mountain, Streets of Afghanistan is a collaborative effort of Western and Afghan photographers and artists. This living art exhibition combines large scale photography, video projection, music, kites, street art, and humans themselves to create a wholly unique and innovative approach to our ethos of storytelling. Connecting communities and cultures in an effort to combat apathy and break stereotypes in a region of the world enduring nearly four decades of conflict.
May 13, 2011 Torpedo Factory, Washington DC
June 2, 2011 Dallas Contemporary Museum of Art
Special viewing at Telluride Mountainfilm May 27-31
Mountain2Mountain was founded in November 2006 by Shannon Galpin. Inspired by becoming a mother, Shannon took action on her deep conviction that all women and girls deserve the same rights and opportunities as her own daughter. She walked away from her career as an athletic trainer and used her own limited funds to launch M2M and “be the change” she wished to see in the world. Shannon recruited volunteers and donors and developed collaborative partnerships with others working across the globe to advance education and opportunity for women and girls. At the same time, she made a number of trips to Afghanistan.
Today, M2M is a burgeoning nonprofit that has touched the lives of hundreds of men, women and children in Afghanistan. M2M has launched projects across the war-torn country to create opportunities that were unimaginable ten years ago. In 2009, Shannon became the first woman to ride a mountain bike in Afghanistan. She will repeat her groundbreaking ride this fall.
Mountain2Mountain believes education is an entry point for community growth and change. M2M works to implement cyclical programs that include training, job creation and microfinance. We start where many organizations finish, with education and vocational training. We believe education and vocational training are empowering only if there is sustainable economic output. We believe the job isn’t done unless there is a market for the midwives we train or the teachers we teach or the agricultural co-ops we help create. We believe change and empowerment come from the inside. M2M works alongside local communities to help develop the tools they need to help themselves.
Create opportunities for a woman through education and training, follow through with job creation and microfinance, and gender equity rises from within. Women who contribute to their communities and families as teachers, skilled birth attendants and business owners gain lasting respect, altering the female role in a dramatic and culturally sustainable way.
Mountain2Mountain doesn’t just build brick and mortar structures without supporting their long-term viability. We don’t train women and girls only to leave them where they started with a few new skills. We seek sustainable progress on human rights, gender equity and the economic vitality of communities on the fringe. http://www.mountain2mountain.org/
PHOTOGRAPHS COURTESY OF Mountain2Mountain