On the outskirts of Lo Manthang, a village in Upper Mustang, Yanzen Gurung hangs a khada, a ceremonial scarf, as an offering to the gods that protect her maternal homeland. She was about to return to Kathmandu, where she lives with her husband. People in the Upper Mustang region believe the gods protect the lands and the hills, and they offer prayers and khadas to them and hang Buddhist prayer flags.
Members of the Jekenisheni Church drum, dance and sing at Chief Zimunya Traditional Court in 22 Miles, an area outside of Mutare, a city in Zimbabwe. The church members, known for colorful outfits and vibrant dance moves, were performing on April 20 at belated International Women’s Day celebrations organized by Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Women Affairs Gender and Community Development.
In Kitchanga, a town 80 kilometers (about 50 miles) from the city of Goma in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Odette Nyirakamanzi, 29, sifts through beans to remove any leaves and seeds. She uses a traditional sieve known in Swahili as a “lungo.” Nyirakamanzi sells the beans at the market on Fridays.
Malena Páez, 20, sits on an interactive art installment at the Centro Cultural Recoleta’s new exhibit, “Entrar en Juego,” or “Enter the Game,” in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The Centro Cultural Recoleta allows visitors to approach and connect with art and offers free admission to many exhibits.
A firefighter monitors a blazing effigy during the Burning of Judas, an Easter ritual celebrated on April 15 at the Plaza de la Catedral de San Cristóbal Mártir in Chiapas, Mexico. The ritual began as the symbolic burning of Judas Iscariot, the disciple who betrayed Jesus, but now the ritual includes effigies of devils and political figures. Seven effigies were burned; five featured Donald Trump figures, and all seven contained references to Mexico’s relationship with the U.S.
A girl crosses a river using a sewer pipe as an improvised bridge on her way to school in Mutare, Zimbabwe. Children take this route to avoid the conventional path, which is much longer and often requires them to pay for public transport.
Susana Esquinca dances as guitarist Wilbert González and saxophonist Anuska Moracho play flamenco music at Los Gauchos in Puerto Morelos, a town in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico. The group has been together for five years and performs at this restaurant every Monday night.
A man dancing in the street wears the traditional costume of mask, sombrero and beads associated with the folk legend El Sombrerón during El Carnaval del Tancoy in the city of Las Rosas in Chiapas, Mexico. The annual festival marks the beginning of Lent. The carnival has its roots in ancient rituals in which indigenous people asked the gods for rain at the beginning of the harvest season.
The band Eddie y Los Grasosos plays for dancers at the monthly Noche de Museos, or Night of Museums, on the main patio at Antiguo Colegio de San Ildefonso in Mexico City. Before the concert, the museum screened the movie “Grease” to create a rock ’n’ roll atmosphere.
Rodolfo Arturo Gómez Lavarrios, 23, breakdances in a public park in Mexico City. Gómez Lavarrios, who goes by his b-boy, or breakdancing, name, Arfo, says it’s difficult to find places to dance in the capital. Sometimes it’s because the floor isn’t the right surface, while other times it’s because some people drive him and other breakdancers away. “Some people don’t know us, but they have a bad opinion [of us],” he says.
Dancers wearing Chinese-style lion costumes and drummers, all from the Asociación Shé Lóng de Kung Fu, perform in Mexico City on Jan. 27 in honor of Lunar New Year. As part of the performance, the lions approach restaurants that have hung lettuce from the entry and remove it with their mouths, to symbolize abundance and to drive away bad spirits. This Year of the Rooster took place on Jan. 28.
An elderly woman carries a bag of potatoes in the Masisi area of Democratic Republic of Congo. U.N. peacekeepers keep watch behind her. Many elderly people have lost children during ongoing conflict in this country, and therefore struggle to survive.
The 12th annual Caravan of Central American Mothers stopped in San Cristóbal de las Casas, a city in southern Mexico, on Nov. 16. There, they were joined by about 200 people in the plaza of the Catedral de San Cristóbal Mártir church. The caravan’s annual trek began in 1999 when a group of mothers from Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua set out to search for their disappeared migrant children. The caravan travels for a month throughout Mexico, pausing to search for their loved ones in migrant shelters, jails and other waypoints, as well as to meet with local officials and others who can help them. This caravan began on Nov. 15 and will be traveling through 11 Mexican states by Dec. 3.
Students from the Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta, Caserío Cooperativa, school walk through the streets in Aldea Chaquijyá, a hamlet in Guatemala’s southwestern Sololá department, to celebrate Guatemala’s independence day on Sept. 15. Guatemala became a colony of Spain in the 16th century and gained its independence in 1821, making this the nation’s 195th birthday.
Mary Tamala operates a sewing business on the streets of Mugunga, a town 18 kilometers (11 miles) outside of Goma, to make ends meet. Tamala, a widow with four children, makes about 500 Congolese francs (51 cents) a day.
Fishermen repair their nets on the island of Gihaya in western Rwanda. The island was once a residence of Juvénal Habyarimana, who was Rwanda’s president from the 1970s until the early 1990s. Now, children play football and fishermen work on their nets on the grassland. At nightfall, the fishermen cast their nets into Lake Kivu for small fish known locally as sambaza.
Raymundo Dominguez, 33, sells balloons in on Jan. 5 Mexico City the day before Three Kings Day, which is considered the end of the Christmas season. The day commemorates the Christian belief that three wise men from distant lands traveled to worship and present gifts to infant Jesus. To celebrate, children tie letters with their gift wishes to the balloons, and send them up in the sky for the kings to read.