Ronald de Hommel
2nd Place - Merit of Excellence
"Central African Republic, the forgotten heart of Africa"
Rebels have used a small school in Patcho in the centre of the country as their headquarters for a while. They decorated the walls with their graffiti. The building is now used as a school again but the community has no money to paint the walls. Right in the heart of Africa, surrounded by Chad, Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo is the Central African Republic (CAR). In line with its neighbours this country is ravaged by internal conflicts. Several rebel groups are engaged in a permanent war with the government. Army and militias have burnt down thousands of villages. The population fled into the bush where an estimated 100,000 still live.
Biography: Ronald de Hommel is a photojournalist from the Netherlands. He studied tv-journalism and has worked as a photographer for almost 10 years. He recently started with video again. He has spent most of these 10 years covering stories all over the world from China to Afghanistan to the Palestinian territories to El Salvador. Ronald specializes in global social issues relating to conflict, the environment and development. He is currently working on a big project called Disputed Waters. His work has been published by Le Monde, National Geographic Magazine, Le Figaro, Jeune Afrique, NRC and Elsevier.