By Eliza Anyangwe and Laura Oliverio, CNN
The work of CNN's As Equals team is to cast a light on underreported stories, from underrepresented storytellers, deepening our understanding of our shared world by focusing on how that world is shaped if you are a woman or nonbinary person.
So while most eyes were rightfully watching the war in Ukraine this year, we continued to ask: "What else should we be looking at? Who is telling stories, whether in text, video or still images, that can bring invaluable perspectives to our coverage?"
This gallery, produced in collaboration with CNN's Digital Photo Team, is an attempt to answer that question and present an alternative way of looking back on 2022. Each photographer has also told us the story behind the image, with their captions edited for brevity and clarity.
The first photo above was taken by Maíra Erlich, who is based in São Paulo and Recife, Brazil. It shows a woman, Regina, with her son, Davi.
"When she was pregnant, Regina got infected with the Zika virus, which caused Davi to be born with microcephaly," Erlich said. The rare birth defect results in an underdeveloped head and brain.
"Over 4,000 children were born with this condition in Brazil between 2015 and 2016, due to the Zika virus outbreak transmitted by the mosquito Aedes aegypti," Erlich said. "Davi has one of the most severe cases. He is blind and has a minimum brain mass. After birth, Regina was told by the doctor that her newborn son wouldn't survive. ...
"Family is a topic that strongly surrounds my work. Since I'm from the northeast of Brazil, where the Zika virus outbreak hit a lot harder compared to other regions, I remember that we were all living amidst the panic of being infected. Bottles of insect repellent were available everywhere, even on restaurant tables, next to olive oil, salt and pepper. If someone got pregnant during that time, it was more sad than happy news. Now that the epidemic has passed, nobody talks about it anymore, but thousands of mothers are still struggling to care for their children and to understand how this rare and barely known health condition affects them."