Marie

My name is Chelsea Sawicki. I am a sophomore from Farmington, Connecticut majoring in Public Policy. Before taking this documentary engagement course here at Duke, I had very little experience with documentary work and photography, but I have quickly learned to love this approach to telling stories.

Working with Marie on this project has been both eye-opening and inspiring to say the least. Marie has taken me inside the world of an intelligent, educated, compassionate, formerly-homeless woman. Before our first meeting I must say I was very nervous about how I was going to be able to connect with a woman whose life experiences have been so different than my own. However, Marie quickly put me at ease with her warmth and eagerness to tell her story. It can be easy to generalize homeless people but Marie humanizes homelessness and emphasizes how this fate can truly happen at any time, to anyone. It has been an absolute honor getting to work with Marie, and I hope that her story reaches out to our community and helps to change the many stigmas and stereotypes we too often associate with homelessness.

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