Allen McInnis

On assignment in Haiti in 1994, photographer Allen McInnis came upon a lineup of people waiting to bathe in a puddle. “They told me it was water trickling down from the lawns and gardens of the wealthy up the hill. It was far cleaner than bathing in sewer water pulled up in a small bucket, which is what many others around the city were doing.”

Allen knew that exposing this and other issues through his photos would help bring support and hopefully some change. But once home, he needed—not just wanted, but needed—to find other ways to help.

And so, Allen held several exhibits, with print sales going to water development projects in Haiti. “And I show this picture at every school presentation I make,” says Allen. “I see the school kids react to the thought of how much water we have and use daily, and how little so many others have. I hope that each presentation will inspire someone to help others.” Since the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Allen’s daughters travel there every year to deliver goods and money to help rebuild a Port-au-Prince orphanage that houses ninety children.


Allen McInnis is a National Newspaper Award recipient and a two time winner of The Canadian Press Picture of the Year. Currently a staff photographer at the Gazette in Montreal, he is the fifth photographer in three generations of the McInnis family.