16 | AUDLEY TRAVELLERCenter. He has received many awards and accolades, spoken at TED conventions, dined with Prince Edward and had his work exhibited at the Whitechapel Gallery in London and the renowned Fotomuseum in Switzerland. But his greatest achievement he says, is none of these. "I've become an inspiration for children," he explains. "I have a responsibility now to do a good job. I go back to the SBT whenever I can and I spend a lot of time with the children there. I tell them about my life and my experiences. I've had a lot of luck but I've also worked hard and I want them to believe that their dreams can come true too. I hear them say 'I want to be Vicky Roy' and I feel I have become the one to look up to. This is both my greatest achievement and my biggest responsibility."So what about the future? This year Vicky's first book, Home Sweet Home, will be published. "I'm very excited about that," says Vicky. "And the Delhi Photography Festival later in the year."I've also recently set up an 'open library' with my friend, the photographer Chandan Gomes," he continues. "We have a collection of photography books that young artists can access, books that can teach them a lot about photography but that they could never afford. We spend time with the young people as they look at the books, we work with them on their projects and we host talks by established photographers to encourage them." Vicky's determination to give something back is striking and his maturity goes well beyond his 24 years, but despite all his success he possesses a modesty that is arresting. "In the future I want to be a very good photographer," he says. "Not necessarily a great one but a good one. I'm only 24 and people don't expect so much from you when you are young, but when I am older people will expect more from someone more experienced."Vicky's grounded nature and down-to-earth character are some of his most salient features and it is easy to see how he can get under the skin of any situation in which he is placed. Despite his initial desire to travel he says Delhi will always be his favourite place to work. "Delhi is an incredible place to be a photographer. There is always so much going on, so many colours, so much life. India is a photographer's dream, my dream."To find out more about the Salaam Baalak Trust, which works with street children in India visit: www.salaambaalaktrust.com Vicky was interviewed by Etain O'Carroll, a freelance travel writer and author for Lonely Planet.Join Vicky on a photography tourAmong other work, Vicky now runs half-day photography tours in Delhi, taking Audley travellers around the city's bustling heart and offering an insider's view of life on the streets. A ten day tailor-made trip to India including a tour with Vicky as well as the Golden Triangle starts from £1,995pp. For more information please contact our India specialists on 01993 838 330.
www.audley.co.uk/india | AUDLEY TRAVELLER | 17Historic Walking Tour of CalcuttaStart the day with a tour of the bustling flower market of Calcutta, which straddles the banks of the Hooghly River. Your guide will lead you through the chaos of the area, down to the bathing ghats where men and women perform their morning ablutions. You will then continue onto the Dalhousie Square where you can marvel at the grand architecture of British India. Next your guide will lead you into the old department store on Chowringhee and into the home of Bomti, a charming host with a wonderful art collection. Your day will be completed with a relaxing trip on the Hooghly, as you cruise upstream past Calcutta's grand waterfront and the beautiful temples of Belur Math, while sipping a cup of the finest Darjeeling tea.Explore the Dharavi slum in MumbaiA half-day tour of the Dharavi slum in Mumbai is a fascinating and eye-opening experience. The slum, the largest in Asia and home to more than a million people, is a place of hardship and poverty, but also one of humour, enterprise and activity; its many small businesses generate an annual turnover of around US$665million. You visit the residential area of the slum where people live in tiny accommodation along narrow dirty lanes. In a city where house rents are among the highest in the world, Dharavi provides a cheap option to those who move to Mumbai from the country. The tour is educational not intrusive, and is organised by Reality Tours, which invests most of its earnings in supporting those living and working in the slum.Death and Rebirth Walk in VaranasiYour walks starts early in the evening and will take you through the concepts of death and rebirth, and the importance of Varanasi (Benares), which is also referred to as Mahashramstana - the great cremation ground of Shiva. Your guide will take you to see sacred ponds that house healing waters; you will visit the home of Kali, a powerful mother goddess who drinks the blood of sinners; and you will step into the abode of the Aghors, renunciants who practice Tantric death rituals at the Manikarnika, Varanasi's main burning ghat. You will hear stories of the Bhairavas (ferocious forms of Shiva who protect the city) before concluding with a visit to the temple of Sankata Devi, known as the Goddess of Trouble who slays demons and destroys sorrow.Experiencing IndiaIndia