One of Ghana’s most decorated photojournalists, Geoffrey Buta, has initiated a fundraising drive to build a three-unit classroom structure for Zagyuri Primary School in the Sagnarigu District of the Northern Region.
Provision of formal education in the school is in a limbo as a dilapidated six-unit classroom structure currently being used by pupils as a place for learning, poses danger to their safety.
With leaking roofs, gaping holes on walls and cracked floors, the school build has turn to be a death trap if nothing is done about it.
Buta said, he was moved by the plight of the children and their teachers when he visited the school 2 years back to carry out an official assignment for New Times Corporation
“I have sought the assistance of organizations to build the school but seeing that no one was ready to help, I decided to raise the funds through the sale of these fine art pictures I’m exhibiting today.
“These are pictures I usually sell to banks, hotels and rich individuals who have love for art….but for this particular fundraising project, I am looking at the situation whereby the proceeds for one pictures can get the school some building materials, he explained.
Dubbed “Foto4Change”, one hundred framed fine art pictures captured at various locations in the Upper West, Upper East, Northern and Volta Regions, Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana were put on exhibition to raise fund.
Many attendees of the exhibition which was held at the Modern City Hotel in Tamale lauded Buta for his initiative, urging individuals and institutions to support the project.
This is not the first time Geoffrey Buta is exhibiting pictures. In 2015, he was the first Ghanaian photojournalist to hold a photo exhibition in Northern Ghana at Gariba Lodge to commemorate International Women’s Day celebration. It was a success by all standards.
In his very short career life as a professional photojournalist, Buta affectionately called has captured almost everything through the lenses of his camera, ranging from nature to lifestyle.
Indeed, the 32-year-old young man whose passion lies in ‘changing lives through photography’ has travelled and covered Northern Ghana more than any Ghanaian journalist in his generation. From covering conflicts, climate change, agriculture, festivals, health to education.
He is one of the few Ghanaian photojournalists many rural and urban dwellers particularly women and children never seem to forget of as one of the numerous guests they welcomed into their homes, farms, markets or festivals taking pictures that rightly captured the moments of their lives.
As a staff of state-owned media organization, New Times Corporation publishers of The Ghanaian Times and spectator, Buta was adjudged the 2012 GJA Photojournalist of the Year.
In the same year, he received the award for best journalist for road safety reporting from the National Road Safety Commission; and was also finalist for Human Rights Photography in Africa (People’s Choice Award) organised by German Development Media Awards/Deutsche Welle.
In 2013, Buta won “People’s Choice Award” for my foto4change project organised by Reach for Change and Tigo; Best Journalist for road safety reporting for the second time from the National Road Safety Commission; as well as Thompson Reuters Foundation/Nokia Photo Award 2013 in the UK. Recently, he was adjudged the Best Development Journalist at the maiden Northern Investor Awards.
Among the many attendees of the photo exhibition were friends, professional colleagues and heads of corporate institutions and non-profit organisations.