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Laos

This trip was very special to me. I took an volunteer trip to Laos to help build schools for a community.

During the times we had off, I would take my camera and go visit the unbeaten paths to find the hidden gems. I did not, however, expect that these gems to be people. 
This is when I found my passion in photography and realized I could use this to reach my ultimate goal of making positive changes. 

Novice Monks Sightsee

Novice Monks Sightsee

Novice Monks from Laos overlook the capital from the top of the Victory Monument. [Vientiane, Laos]

Traveling Monks

Traveling Monks

Monks from neighbouring country, Thailand, off to see the rest of Laos. [Vientiane, Laos]

Local Lao Girl - Bu Van

Local Lao Girl - Bu Van

Bu Van, 13, wants to grow up to be a Teacher at the school she attends now.

Little Joys in Life

Little Joys in Life

During a second visit to Bana Por, we bought them a soccer ball. Words can’t explain how overwhelmed we were to see them have such smiles.

Mother and Son shares a moment.

Mother and Son shares a moment.

Ton Tan, 3, and his mother. They live together in a tiny village, Bana Por, just outside Luang Prabang, Laos

Watching the world go by

Watching the world go by

At a tiny village, a local girl sits in front of her house while she watches her friends play soccer.

Novice Monk Awaits Lunch

Novice Monk Awaits Lunch

Locals offers food to Monks at local temples in exchange for blessings and prayers.

Monks Offer Blessings

Monks Offer Blessings

Monks offering blessings at a local temple. He will say a prayer and tie a white yarn around your wrist to protect you from bad luck.

Camera Stare

Camera Stare

Local boy from the village of Bana Por, eats a cookie while he tries to hide his shy smile from the camera.

Innocent Eyes

Innocent Eyes

Ton Tan sits around this table after playtime to rest. He starts school next year, and until then, he can just play and sit at the table with his grandma

Selling Karma

Selling Karma

This man is offering the opportunity to tourists and locals to release the birds from their cages, therefore, giving them better karma.

Monks Pose for Photo

Monks Pose for Photo

Monks Posing for a photo. Monks are very respected in Laos, as friendly as they are, it is always respectful to ask for their permission for a photo.

Praying Monks

Praying Monks

Monks praying at their local temple.

Local Lao Net-throwing Fisherman

Local Lao Net-throwing Fisherman

Net-throwing Fisherman packs his nets for the day. He then takes the fish and sells it at one of the local markets.

Monks Resting

Monks Resting

Monks from Thailand taking a break at the Victory Monument during their holiday. [Vientiane, Laos]

School Desks

School Desks

Volunteers rebuilt some of the desks and benches for this elementary school.

TukTuk on Busy Street

TukTuk on Busy Street

Patient Tuk-Tuk on the busy streets of Vientiane, Laos

Lao Students hanging out

Lao Students hanging out

Kids Hanging out after their Summer classes at a local elementary school.

School Kids

School Kids

This group of boys were so eager to get a photo of all them together.

Victory Monument

Victory Monument

Victory Monument (Patuxai) - Vientiane, Laos This monument was built between 1957 - 1968 to commemorate those who fought for independence against the French.

School Walls

School Walls

Group of volunteers re-painted and designed this local classroom.

Play Time

Play Time

Ton Tan is eager to play with his new toy.

Monkey on a ride

Monkey on a ride

Monkey casually enjoying a ride on the back of this pick-up.

Lao School Bleachers

Lao School Bleachers

Girls hanging out on the bleachers after their summer class.

Children Smiles

Children Smiles

Smiles all around in a tiny Village of Bana Por.

Summer School.

Summer School.

Students attending summer school.

Farmer picking berries

Farmer picking berries

Local Farmer looks for berries to feed his chickens.

Picking Berries

Picking Berries

Local farmer picks berries for his chickens.

Classroom Laos

Classroom Laos

Layout of a typical local Laos classroom. This school had no electricity, so windows were the only source of light and cool air.

Farm Girls

Farm Girls

Local girls playing on their farm.

Buddha_Statue

Buddha_Statue

One of the many statues of Buddha at Wat Sisaket Temple. There are roughly 7000 statues of Buddha in the interior.

Tired Eyes

Tired Eyes

Ton Tan had just woke up from his afternoon nap.

Between Lines

Between Lines

Ton Tan's go to gesture while taking a photo.

Grandma Love

Grandma Love

Grandma kisses the newest addition to her family.

Cutting Sugarcane

Cutting Sugarcane

First thing I saw when visiting Bana Por Village. A little boy and his sisters cutting sugarcane while grandma cooks

How do you write your name?

How do you write your name?

Bu Van shows us how to write her name in Laotian.

Giant Reclining Golden Buddha

Giant Reclining Golden Buddha

Reclining Golden Buddha at Pha That Luang.

Buddha Park

Buddha Park

Buddha Park (Xieng Khuan), is a public park just outside of Vientiane, Laos. Locals will come here on weekends for picnics or just a day out with the family

Buddha Portrait

Buddha Portrait

Buddha statue at Wat Sisaket Temple surrounded by hundreds of little intricate statues in the wall.

Silhouette Pumpkin Tower

Silhouette Pumpkin Tower

The very top of the 'Pumpkin Tower' at Buddha Park. The Pumpkin Tower itself has 3 levels, hell, earth and heaven - each floor is designed and decorated as such.