Danielle Villasana and FotoEvidence launch a Kickstarter campaign to make a book that will actively counter the prejudices against trans women in Peru.
It’s a part of a broader effort of turning a documentary photography project into a real social change.
We featured A Light Inside on our website in 2016, when Danielle was sounding the alarm about the dramatic situation of transsexual persons in Peru. At 80 percent, Latin America leads the world in homicides of transgender people and most don’t live past 35. Without legal protections, many cases of violence and murder go undocumented, leaving these human rights abuses invisible. What is visible, however, are sensationalistic narratives of trans women in traditional media that contribute to a narrow perspective that further stigmatizes them.
Now, Danielle wants to make A Light Inside a bilingual photo book that will be accessible throughout Peru and reach police forces, medical institutions, religious practitioners, and lawmakers – sectors that are often complicit in the abuse against trans women because of institutional prejudice and lack of understanding.
Together with FotoEvidence, a leading organization in publishing long-form documentary photography projects focused on human rights and social justice, she launched a Kickstarter campaign to collect funds for making it happen.
You can actually pre-order a signed copy of A Light Inside through the campaign. The book will include approximately 80 color photographs and a text by Leyla Ariana Huerta Castillo, a prominent trans activist in Peru. It will measure 8 x 20 inches and will be printed on 170 lb Arctic Volume paper and with a semi-soft binding.
Danielle Villasana is an independent photojournalist based in Istanbul whose documentary work focuses on human rights, women, displacement, and health across the world. She strongly believes in giving back through photography, education, and community engagement. In 2014, in collaboration with the U.S. Embassy in Peru, she founded Fotos por el Cambio, a yearly photography workshop that aims to empower communities and emerging photographers. In Spring 2016, she taught photography and multimedia at the American University of Nigeria as a traveling lecturer. That same year, she joined The Everyday Project‘s Community Team where she helps manage @EverydayEverywhere and writes, edits, and produces articles for Re-Picture.