On assignment: Photographer and filmmaker, Jason Florio, photographs a young returnee in her small shop in Bakoteh, The Gambia, West Africa. Image ©Helen Jones-Florio

On Assignment: The Gambia, West Africa – Jason Florio

February, 2021: Photographer & filmmaker, Jason Florio – On assignment in The Gambia. My current project is based around returnees, who left by ‘the backway’ to Libya but who have since returned to home. Documenting them – through film and photography – as they begin to rebuild their lives, with the support of the organisation, Catholic Relief Services.

Poster advertising the screening of 'I Cannot Bury My Father' short documentary at the African Film Festival, New York. Director of Photography - Jason Florio

‘I Cannot Bury My Father’ documentary – African Film Festival, New York, 2021

African Film Festival, New York, 2021: ‘I Cannot Bury My Father’ documentary – In 2005, Gambian dictator Yahya Jammeh murdered 56 West African migrants out of fear they were mercenaries intending to overthrow him. The disappearance of their slain bodies robbed families of healing and closure by being unable to bury their loved ones. Isaac Mensah, one of the victim’s sons, shares the emotional toll of this atrocity and his quest for answers…

President Adama Barrow of The Gambia arriving back to home crowds of well wishes estimated in the hundreds of thousands.© Jason Florio

On this day: Jan 26, 2017 – President Adama Barrow returns home to The Gambia, West Africa

Jan 26th, 2017: A triumphant, and momentous day for The Gambia, West Africa. Ten’s of thousands of euphoric Gambians lined the streets for miles – and miles! (an estimated over 100,000 Gambians flocked the main road) – to welcome home their new president, Adama Barrow. Due to potential security risks, Barrow had briefly exiled himself to neighbouring Senegal, where he was inaugurated at the Gambian Embassy, Dakar.