by Danny Goldfield
Photograph one child from every country on earth.
Find each child living in New York City.
List of 23 remaining countries*
Andorra | Benin | Central African Republic | Djibouti | Kiribati | Kuwait | Malawi | Mauritius | Micronesia | Monaco | Mozambique | Nauru | North Korea | Palau | Papua New Guinea | Qatar | Samoa | Seychelles | Saudi Arabia | Solomon Island | South Sudan | United Arab Emirates | Vanuatu
* List includes current member states of the United Nations
Criteria for participation
1. Permission from a parent or guardian.
2. Child is twelve years old or younger. (Youngest so far is thirty-four days old)
3. Currently live in one of the five boroughs of New York City: The Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens or Staten Island.
4. The child was born in another country and now lives in NYC OR child now lives in NYC and both parents are from a country on the list.
5. The first family to meet the criteria is invited to participate.
Origin of Idea
In 2003, while driving across the United States, I stopped at a gas station in Mesa, Arizona and met Rana Sodhi, a Sikh whose brother was shot down in a hate crime in front of their family-owned gas station 4 days after 9/11 . In 2002, Rana’s second brother was driving his taxi in San Francisco and was shot to death.
Rana’s response to these violent acts against his brothers was a refusal to hole up and live in fear. Rana said, “It is important for me to get out of my house and meet my neighbors.” By reaching out to those who might not otherwise know him, he hoped to reduce the danger to himself, his family and his community.
Driving later that night, inspired by Rana’s simple prescription to make the world safe by getting to know neighbors better, I was struck by the idea to photograph a child from every country on earth and find them all living in New York City.
In September of 2011, Rana was a guest of mine in New York City to attend the opening of an NYChildren exhibition at the so-called Ground Zero Mosque. With media cameras rolling and flashing, Rana cut the ceremonial red ribbon to open the show that his good will inspired.