Our Blog

Our Blog

Battling on

Battling on

On Tuesday I mentioned that acclaimed crime writer Belinda Bauer had been shortlisted amongst fierce competition for the prestigious Gold Dagger, an award given to the best crime novel of the year.  Belinda's novel,

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Moving forward

Moving forward

In January I first wrote about Belinda Bauer, the author of six acclaimed crime novels, and a longtime supporter of The Human, Earth Project. Belinda cites the Project as an inspiration for her latest work, The Shut Eye, which revolves around the mysterious...

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New strength

Sculpture can be either an additive or subtractive process. A sculptor might build his work from scratch, or else chip away at a block of stone to discover his creation within. For the past six months, I have dedicated myself to the post-production of our...

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M’s dilemma XIV: A new identity

For the first time since her abduction almost four years earlier, my trafficked Hmong friend M had the freedom to return home to her family in Vietnam. After finally reaching the border, however, M turned back at the urgings of her Chinese "husband". She did so to...

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M’s dilemma XIII: Broken wings

My trafficked Hmong friend M never made it home to her family in Vietnam. After having risked a bus journey of some 3,000 kilometres (1,800 miles) across China without identification, M had almost reached the Vietnamese border. M first hesitated on hearing rumours of...

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M’s dilemma XII: On the border

Almost four years after being abducted from her home in Vietnam and sold as a bride in China, my trafficked friend M was nearly home. M's Chinese "husband" had, unexpectedly, given his permission for M to visit her family in Vietnam.As an illegal resident, M had...

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M’s dilemma XI: Clever girl

M’s dilemma XI: Clever girl

M's story had been a horrific one - yet how was she to prove it?When she'd been abducted as a teenager from her home in Vietnam and trafficked into China, my young Hmong friend had been stripped of her clothes, her Vietnamese phone, and her identity. When she'd been...

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M’s dilemma X: Hunting the hunter

M’s dilemma X: Hunting the hunter

There are many similarities in the stories of my trafficked Hmong friends M and P. Both were abducted at the age of sixteen from their home in northern Vietnam. Both were deceived, drugged and spirited across the border by young Vietnamese Hmong men. Both were held...

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M’s dilemma IX: A case of mistaken identity

M’s dilemma IX: A case of mistaken identity

The past month has, for me, been spent deep in the edit of Sisters For Sale, our feature-length documentary to raise awareness of human trafficking. The film focuses on the stories of my teenaged Hmong friends who were abducted from northern Vietnam and trafficked to...

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M’s dilemma VIII: A twist in the tail

M’s dilemma VIII: A twist in the tail

In 2010, while living in the mountains of northern Vietnam, I became friends with a teenaged Hmong girl named M. The following year M was abducted, and was believed trafficked to China for sale as a bride or prostitute. Last year, I finally succeeded in contacting,...

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Shattered

Shattered

It has now been one month since the 7.8-magnitude earthquake which rocked Nepal, and the impoverished nation is still reeling. Many of the hundreds of aftershocks, with magnitudes as high as 7.3, might be considered major earthquakes in their own rights, and have left...

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Home

What was planned as a short break from The Human, Earth Project has been a busy time for me here in Australia. At one point I caught myself working on three computers synchronously, juggling eight terrabytes of external hard drives to get everything in order for the...

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Aftershock

It has now been one week since the colossal 7.8-magnitude earthquake that rocked Nepal and the surrounding region. As the damage is assessed and the death toll soars, it seems likely to surpass Nepal's 1934 earthquake to become the most devastating quake in Nepali...

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Shock

Shock

In 2011, I spent a monsoon season living in a village in the Himalayan foothills of central Nepal.  Ten months ago, I returned to that village to reconnect with Amma and Laksman, a local couple there that had taken me into their family.  I also reconnected with Saroj,...

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Storytelling

Since finishing the first draft of the Sisters For Sale documentary script six weeks ago, I've been working with the script and footage synchronously, to understand how the story works in practice. I've been searching for the best way to condense a complex and...

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About a girl

About a girl

My primary motivation for returning to Asia 19 months ago was to search for M, a teenaged Hmong friend who had been abducted and presumed trafficked to China for sale as a bride or prostitute. Many people believed that search to be impossible, and I'll freely admit...

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