In June 2013, Photographer Elley Ho and Creative Director Heward Jue were awarded one of two Getty Images Creative Grants for their proposal to benefit nonprofit organization Asante Africa Foundation.

Here they reflect on the process and how the Getty Images Creative Grant empowered them to create a compelling and the effective campaign “Educating Children | Transforming Worlds” to help the Asante Africa Foundation better tell their story.

Asante Africa Foundation is a nonprofit working to educate children in East Africa. Entering its seventh year, the organization is witnessing how its work is profoundly transforming the lives of African children and their communities.

We wanted to help this worthy organization with their messaging, and are so honored to have been awarded the 2013 Getty Images Creative Grant. This generous support has enabled us to create a compelling and substantive campaign for Asante Africa Foundation, consisting of a promotional video, print ads and digital banners.

Asante Africa Foundation "Educating Children | Transforming Worlds" from Heward Jue on Vimeo.

Asante Africa Foundation’s maxim is “Educating Children | Transforming Worlds.” Hence, we wanted to create a campaign that showcases the positive transformations made possible through education.

Before traveling to Africa, we spent considerable time thinking about all the facets of African life that education improves. In doing so, we came up with a thought-provoking concept of showing parallel worlds. The construct we devised shows an image of an uneducated African, which is then compared to another image of the same person, but educated. We created visual interest through similarities in composition, while drastically contrasting the contexts of the images. We then crafted headline quotes for our subjects, giving the scenarios an added measure of poignancy.

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When we arrived in Africa, we relied completely on Asante Africa Foundation’s local staff to help us with all of our production logistics. Even though none of them had any production experience, they were extremely enthusiastic and bent over backwards helping us with everything from casting, to location scouting, to the transport and setup of our equipment. We shot for a week in Kenya, and another in Tanzania. Each day, we worked ourselves to exhaustion, but had great fun making wonderful new friends in the process. What was truly gratifying was despite the challenges of pulling off an intricate production in the Third World, we got to work with incredibly gracious and resourceful people, creating a first-rate product for a first-rate organization. We hope our efforts will move people to learn more about Asante Africa Foundation, and support the transformative work that they are doing.

A very special thanks to Getty Images for making all of this possible.

Want more? Go further behind the scenes of the making of this campaign in this video created by Elley Ho and Heward Jue.

To learn more about Asante Africa, please visit

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