About the Project

Lensational is a non-profit social enterprise, founded in Hong Kong on International Women’s Day 2013, with the mission of equipping women in the developing world with cameras and photography training. We believe that photography can support the empowerment of women on two levels:

(1) Emotional Empowerment: Gaining access to cameras gives them a new way to express themselves freely and to retain memories.  Therapeutic photography is also a proven counseling technique to overcome social isolation.
(2) Economic Empowerment: They will receive 50 percent of the revenue if their photographs are sold through Lensational’s online platform and partner agencies. With photography skills, they can also pursue freelance photography opportunities.

Since March 2013, pilot programs benefiting 200 women from Indonesia, the Philippines, Pakistan, and Bangladesh were conducted; the results were shared with over 1000 visitors to our photo exhibitions in Hong Kong, London, and New York, and more than 5,000 supporters on social media channels.
Lensational has received awards globally, including Hivos (the Netherlands), the London School of Economics (the United Kingdom), and the Resolution Project (the United States), as well as media coverage on the Guardian, The South China Morning Post (Hong Kong), Express Tribune (Pakistan), Dhaka Tribune (Bangladesh) and Asia Calling (Indonesia).

Lensational has three key activities: 1) Collecting second-hand digital cameras; 2) Conducting photography training; 3) Selling photographs. Our biggest hubs are Hong Kong, London, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. Globally we have 40 volunteers working for Lensational. We are looking to expand to Indonesia, Kenya, and Ethiopia by the end of this year. 


April 24, 2019 (last update 04-18-2021)