$7,501 to $15,000



  • Bridges--Building Community through Digital Storytelling
  • Women Empowered--Inspiring Change in the Emerging World
  • Tibetan Portrait--The Power of Compassion


Adventure | Environmentalism | Inspiration


For over twenty-five years Phil Borges has lived with and documented indigenous and tribal cultures around the world. Through his work, he strives to create a heightened understanding of the issues faced by people in the developing world

Through his exhibits and award-winning books, Phil Borges attempts to create a relationship between the audience and his photographic subjects. "I want the viewer to see these people as individuals, to know their names and a bit of their history, not just to view them as an anonymous part of some remote ethnic or tribal group."

Mr. Borges' book Tibetan Portrait: The Power of Compassion, introduces individuals from a deeply spiritual culture who have been marginalized and displaced by the occupation of their homeland. In 1998 he joined Amnesty International to present Enduring Spirit, an exhibit and book celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. His exhibit and book The Gift highlights the work of medical teams that provide facial reconstructive surgery to children in the developing world.

Phil Borges has hosted three television documentaries for Discovery and National Geographic as a part of a series that investigates indigenous cultures that still maintain a spiritual dialogue with the natural world.

Mr. Borges' current project, Women Empowered, introduces some of the extraordinary women in the developing world who are breaking through gender barriers and conventions in order to enhance their well being and the well being of their communities.

Phil Borges' photographs are collected and exhibited in museums and galleries worldwide. His award-winning books have been published in four languages and in 1998 he was presented the Photo Media Magazine "Photoperson of the Year" award. In December 2003 he was honored with the Humanitarian Award, receiving the Lucie at the 1st Annual International Photography Awards. In 2005 he was named a Giraffe Hero for his humanitarian work. He teaches and lectures internationally and is co-founder of Blue Earth Alliance, a 501c3 that sponsors photographic projects focusing on endangered cultures and threatened environments.

In 2001 Phil Borges founded Bridges to Understanding, an on-line classroom program that connects youth worldwide through digital storytelling for the purpose of exploring and honoring cultural diversity. Volunteer mentors help the Bridges students create photo-stories of their lives that are then uploaded and shared with students in other parts of the world. Bridges is growing rapidly and currently has sites in India, Kenya, Guatemala, Peru, Nepal, and the Navajo Nation.

Mr. Borges graduated from University of California as a Regents Scholar in 1969 and was honored with their prestigious University of California Medal in 2004. He lives with his family in Seattle.

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