They say a picture paints a thousand words, and this couldn’t be more true for ‘Life on the Streets’.

A powerful photo exhibition from our Perspectives project was launched in Ipswich at the weekend, to widespread media coverage and interest.

“Life on the Streets” is an exhibition where the photographers are all either currently homeless or have been in the past. Disposable film cameras were given to people engaging with the support services provided by Essex Partnership University Foundation Trust (EPUT) and the other local services, and they were asked to make images which they felt an emotional connection to. The resulting photographs, and the people behind them, were featured on BBC Radio Suffolk, the East Anglian Daily Times, BBC Cambridge Breakfast and the Ipswich Star. You can also listen to an interview about the exhibition on Soundcloud.

Fiona Hanlon, Mental Health Specialist at Volunteering Matters: “Many of the photographers have said that when you are homeless every day is the same “ground hog day” and that boredom is a huge issue. Being involved in the project has given participants a chance to do something positive and creative, work as part of a team and many have uncovered a talent they didn’t know they had. These pictures reflect the diversity, talent, hopes and hardships of a unique group of individuals and we are very proud and excited to share them with the public.”

The exhibition is free to the public, and on at Ipswich County Library from 2 – 28 February 2019.

What is Perspectives project?

Perspectives is a Volunteering Matters project runs in partnership with Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUT). Through volunteering and social action, the aim is to give a voice to people and groups who find themselves living outside of mainstream society, culture and services.

How does it give people a voice?

Perspectives gets people who are receiving health-related services in the local area to share their stories and experiences. The form this message takes is up to participants – it could be shared through drama, art, or as in the case of the Life on the Streets exhibition, photography.

Why is it important?

We believe that a successful project has to work in partnership with the community in which it’s based. By sharing the experiences of those who may otherwise not be heard by mainstream society, and giving them voice and agency, they can inform services provided in the local area.

Find out more about Perspectives

Visit the exhibition