Welcome to the Jimmy Nelson Foundation


Celebrating Humanity

The Jimmy Nelson Foundation, founded as a non-profit organization by artist Jimmy Nelson in 2016, is a testament to his dedication to giving back to the communities that facilitate his artistic work.

The Foundation is characterized by its commitment to fostering cultural and educational initiatives that organically arise within each community, thereby contributing to the sustainable development and preservation of their unique heritage.

Mundiya Kepanga, Huli | Kope village, Tari, Hela province | Papua New Guinea, 2017

A platform for Indigenous peoples

The Jimmy Nelson Foundation’s mission is to serve as a platform for Indigenous peoples, empowering them to express their own narratives encompassing stories of beauty, knowledge, and challenges.

By sharing these stories, the Foundation aims to resonate with global audiences, fostering a greater understanding and appreciation of the diverse perspectives and richness inherent in all of humanity.


The Jimmy Nelson Foundation believes that by honouring and respecting humanity’s cultural diversity, we can cultivate a more peaceful and harmonious world for everyone.
Oxana & Olesya, Chukchi | Second Brigade, Chukotka, Siberia | Russia. 2012

Ambassadors for Humanity

The Jimmy Nelson Studio actively contributes a portion of its generated revenues from artistic endeavours to support the Foundation. While external financial contributions are also welcomed, the Foundation expresses gratitude even for small donations from private individuals.

However, supporting the Jimmy Nelson Foundation goes beyond a financial commitment. It is an invitation to deeply care about all of humanity and the Indigenous cultures facing the greatest threats to affirming their identities and existence.

By cultivating a genuine interest in their survival and well-being, supporters play a pivotal role in fostering a positive shift in mindsets globally. This collective effort forms a wave of ambassadors for humanity, contributing to a more interconnected and compassionate world.

If you identify with our values, we invite you to join us, and become an ambassador of a global citizenship. Together we can celebrate our universal roots, preserve our histories, and create a lasting legacy to future generations.
Become an Ambassador

Educational Program & Reciprocity Projects

The Foundation operates through two programmes: Cult-ED, which offers free on-line education to foster global citizenship worldwide; and Give Back, which supports the communities visited for Jimmy Nelson’s work through reciprocity projects. 

The Foundation works with local partners and experts to create educational and artistic projects that showcase the richness and uniqueness of each culture. This includes promoting original books, films, exhibitions, workshops, festivals, and online platforms.


Free on-line education for Humanity

Cult-ED is a free on-line education program through which the Indigenous peoples have a direct voice to present their own cultures and traditions. Narrated first-hand by members of the communities interviewed during Jimmy Nelson’s travels, Cult-ED is a platform that prioritizes the authentic voices of Indigenous people.

In an effort to move beyond conventional and historically biased teachings found in traditional education, Cult-ED embodies a commitment to cultivating a more inclusive vocabulary and a culturally sensitive language. The program aims to foster a deeper understanding of diverse forms of knowledge, amplifying the voices that have often been marginalized in mainstream educational narratives. New stories in this new format will be online soon.


Projects that give back

Due to the profound relationships cultivated by Jimmy Nelson during his work with Indigenous peoples, the Foundation is deeply committed to reciprocating the support it receives from these communities.

This commitment is manifested through reciprocity projects, initiatives aimed at assisting local communities in their endeavours to safeguard and transmit their heritage and knowledge to present and future generations. These projects are born out of the specific needs and priorities of each community, often developed in collaboration with local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to ensure effective implementation and community engagement. The Foundation’s dedication to reciprocity underscores its commitment to fostering sustainable initiatives that directly benefit the Indigenous communities involved.