Spokeswoman Tamara Nasser said: “The exhibition is the result of several months’ partnership working from Turning Tides Safe in Sussex and Brighton Women’s Centre. The project is part of a wider initiative to raise the profile of the challenges faced by women experiencing homelessness funded by Homeless Link.
“Janie Pamment, women’s support navigator (Turning Tides), Sam Otway, women’s support worker (Safe in Sussex) and Jana Riley, women’s accommodation support worker (Brighton Women’s Centre) were instrumental in coordinating and running numerous women’s groups across West Sussex for those that had experienced homelessness.
“Through sharing their stories in a safe and supportive environment group members used photographs to highlight the complicated struggle they have faced as women experiencing homelessness.
“Together, with a local professional photographer, Samantha Pharoah, a series of evocative images have been shared via public display at various locations.”
Samantha said; “It has been quite staggering to hear about the life events that these women have had to bear. I hope this exhibition will help these real lives to be seen and not ignored.”
Janie Pamment highlighted how critical the partnership has been to local women accessing the support groups: “I have been Turning Tides’ women’s support navigator for almost a year now and have seen first-hand how critical these groups are to women finding the confidence to not only share their stories but feel empowered and proud of who they are. A quarter of Turning Tides’ clients are women and we work to ensure our services are delivered in a gender-informed way. The focused work we have accomplished together, alongside our partners, is fundamental to delivering services which respond to the needs of women who have often experienced great trauma in their lives.”
Importantly the women themselves have felt empowered by the project, as one said; “Taking photos about my journey has helped me to think about it and be proud of myself.”
The photographic project was coordinated by the Ideas Alliance as part of the national Ending Women’s Homelessness (EWH) campaign that has been running for the past year. According to Helen Sharp from the Ideas Alliance, the women “have created a unique, emotional display of work that captures the world from their perspective and which, hopefully, will go a long way towards changing perceptions. Decision-makers need to see this.”
The pictures and life stories created by the women are on display at Littlehampton’s East Beach Café until May 15. The exhibition is also being displayed on Worthing promenade opposite West Buildings until the end of June. Other venues across the county are soon to be confirmed.
For more information about the exhibition and the work of Turning Tides visit: www.turning-tides.org.uk/ending-womens-homelessness/
Turning Tides is the largest provider of homeless services for single people throughout West Sussex. The charity runs 21 properties in various locations across the county and has over 300 volunteers and 140 paid staff supporting its mission to end local homelessness. For over 28 years, Turning Tides has supported thousands of rough sleepers and homeless men and women throughout most of West Sussex.
Turning Tides believe that everyone has the right to a home, regardless of the difficulties they may face in their lives. The work they undertake to empower homeless and insecurely housed individuals is vital. Through a variety of specialist support services, both residential and community based, the aim for each person is that they are empowered to fulfil their potential and secure a brighter future.
Head office: Turning Tides, Town Hall, Chapel Road, Worthing, West Sussex, BN11 1HA