FACES OF DIGNITY
A PHOTOGRAPHIC NARRATIVE OF THE REFUGEE CRISIS
"How we treat the uprooted will shape the future of our world."
-- Melissa Fleming, UNHCR
“We are at a breaking point. It feels as if Europe and the world are turning their backs on us."
--a volunteer with "Help Refugees," one of the few
charities that remain on the island of Chios, Greece.
Thousands who have escaped brutal regimes in places like Syria are now
languishing in refugee camps in economically struggling countries
such as Greece and Italy.
Innocent men, women, and children are caught in the crossfire of chaotic
immigration policies that have resulted in being stuck in a sort of purgatory.
Unable to return home or move forward, many are living in often squalid and
violent conditions in the camps.
Children have been separated from families, with depression and violence
erupting in the vacuum of not knowing.
My heart is heavy. Over this past year, I’ve followed the stories of chemical attacks on civilians, barrel bombs, and torture of children. I’ve felt a sense of disorientation, confusion, sadness and conflict about the polarizing values and beliefs dividing our country. I’ve struggled to make sense of what feels nonsensical.
Over time, what has become clear is my inner voice telling me to put my skills to work in an immediate and direct way. The call to serve has intensified over the past few months to the point that to say “no” feels perilous, a sort of soul-death.
Out of this conversation has emerged a project I’m calling “Faces of Dignity.”
All people deserve a witness to their story. I feel called to capture images and stories of the displaced, accompanied by stories that I hope creates connection . . . between myself and the subject . . . and ultimately, with you.
I believe that it is through this connection that healing and a way forward are possible.
I am unable to do this project without my community. I am asking for your support.
If you are able and interested, you can find out more about the specifics of the project here.
Bless you all.