flagship Project 005: Baltimore
ABOUT THE PROJECT
In July 2013, 100cameras partnered with the Refugee Youth Project (RYP), a non-profit located in Baltimore that helps refugee students develop academically, emotionally, and socially. About 38% of refugees resettled in the U.S. are children, and Baltimore is among the largest refugee communities. Through the sales of our students' images, we support RYP in preventing school drop-out, preparing refugee youth for college and/or a career, easing the integration experience, and promoting creative expression to build self-esteem and foster community among diverse Refugee youth populations.
During the course, we heard story after story of survival. Many students were chased out of their homes without notice, having to flee for safety, leaving behind all family and friends without any opportunity to say goodbye. Most were then displaced for years, moving throughout multiple countries to find food, shelter, and protection — all before arriving in the United States. Upon resettling, they faced challenges such as having to learn English, navigating new educational systems, coping with stereotypes and bullying, neglect, violence, and simply having to adjust to a myriad of cultural differences.
Through their expressed narratives, however, we realize these students are extraordinarily resilient and carry a deep strength, despite the day-to-day obstacles they face. They are hopeful for the future and very rarely look back. One of our students, Jean Marie from New Guinea, freely experimented with composition and light in his photography, articulating the difference between darkness and light as portrayed in his work. He explained how his subject matter is a direct reflection of his life, “I've had a lot of bad things [happen] in my life. So I'm really thankful for the little bright, joyful... happiness I get.”
100% of proceeds fund educational resources for RYP to reach more refugee youth that currently do not have access to these services and to provide safe transportation options for students participating in the RYP programs, and 50% funds ongoing project implementation providing kids with the tools they need to share their perspectives and create change.
To date, the sales from the students' photography have raised $315. Join our mission to empower these students to provide their own educational resources by purchasing their work and sharing their perspectives with your friends, family, and colleagues.