AHEAD of this year’s commemorations for Earth Day, United States (U.S.) Ambassador Virginia Palmer has announced the winners of the U.S. Embassy’s ‘Capture the Change’ photo contest.
With the aim of giving young Ghanaians an opportunity to show the effects of climate change on their own communities, the contest received more than 100 submissions from professional and amateur photographers. The initiative forms part of the U.S. government’s commitment to partnering with Ghana to tackle the climate crisis.
“These photos clearly show how young Ghanaians are experiencing our changing climate. I am really impressed by their creativity and optimism, as well as their emotional resolve to address the climate crisis,” said Ambassador Palmer, meeting the winners.
African nations are already experiencing some of the worst impacts of climate change. Changing climate patterns are affecting agricultural yields, while more frequent floods and droughts are threatening food security in the region and adding to migration pressures.
Tackling the climate crisis is a priority for the U.S. government. Since January 2021, the Biden Administration has invested in and plans to work with Congress to provide at least $1.1 billion to support African-led efforts to reinforce conservation, climate adaptation, and a just energy transition.
The three winners of the photo contest vividly illustrate these pressures, while also shedding the light of optimism for change to confront the climate crisis. The winning photos will be printed in the Daily Graphic on Friday, April 21, 2023. The Daily Graphic is the official media partner for this initiative. (See photos with original captions at bottom).
Stephen Ofori Amo was named the overall winner. His photo depicts a young child surrounded by the stark impacts of climate change, venting the frustrations of a generation yet seemingly ready to take action.
Enoch Anyane scored second place with his photo showing a solitary man, surrounded by forestry destruction – broken trees and timber waste – concentrating on planting a single sapling to fight deforestation.
Akrong Sylvester Senyo Kwame’s third place photo ‘The Lone Survivor’ powerfully depicts the contrasts of unpredictable rainfall with dry soil, while highlighting our shared role in caring for, nurturing, and restoring nature to address the climate crisis.
Each of the three winners will receive electronic equipment – a camera, laptop, or smartphone – to continue their journey in telling Ghana’s climate story. The top 15 submissions, including the three winners, are currently on display at the Embassy and will be shown at partner institutions for the rest of the year.
All submissions were pre-screened to ensure compliance with the rules of the contest: all photos had to be taken in Ghana during 2023, depicting the effects of climate change and Ghanaians’ innovative adaptation approaches. Fifteen photos were shorted listed with the help of six judges, including celebrated Ghanaian photographer Yaw Pare. The top 15 images were posted on social media to assist the panel of judges in determining the top five images, from which they selected the ultimate winners. As a photography contest, judges weighted photographic quality, relevance of the photo to the theme, storytelling, and the submission’s individual caption.