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© Thomas Cytrynowicz 2019

Moutain Child

These pictures are the result of a work carried out in Northern Vietnam. As part of a two month journey across Vietnam and Cambodia, I traveled the mountains inhabited by Black Hmong tribes in proximity to the Chinese border.

I keep a very deep and powerful memory from all the children I encountered, from one village to another and along the road.

Black Hmong, amongst other ethnic minorities are widely discriminated against in Vietnam. Finding themselves isolated in the northern mountains, the tribes are considerably poorer than people living in cities, consequently leading to limited access to education for the majority of children. While some are lucky enough to attend primary school, high school is usually not even an option.

As a mother of three told me while I was staying at her house, even if almost impossible, it is the dream of every single one of those parents to gather enough money to offer their offspring a chance to live a less difficult life by sending them to school.

Rice and wheat cultivators mainly, Black Hmong of all ages work long hours every day, and children are not at rest. Smart, independent and terribly resourceful, meeting any of them is a wonderful experience.

Without further ado, let the journey begin.