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  • Iwaya Waterside Community
    Iwaya, Lagos, Nigeria
    July 2011
  • During my most recent trip back home to Lagos, Nigeria, I had the opportunity to see life from an entirely new perspective. Along the Lagos Lagoon, in a location only visible to those driving down the Third Mainland Bridge, live the people of the Iwaya Waterside Community.

    After reluctantly taking a wobbly 12-seater canoe through some of the tightest waterways I've seen to date, I arrived in the heart of the waterside community and it immediately became apparent that what most people can only imagine is what the people of the Iwaya Waterside Community know to be reality.

    There on the water lay houses, schools and churches... all on wooden stilts. An entire community of over 5,000 people living on water. How these structures stand is still a mystery to me. There was even a Doctors Without Borders health center on the water as well. Basically, everything your ideal society would need to function. Or, better yet, only the absolute basic needs required to survive.

    In a personal effort not to exploit the people of the Iwaya Waterside Community, I've held on to these photos for almost a year, but I now realize that I will only be doing them a disservice by keeping their plight a secret.

    This is the Iwaya Waterside Community.