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Invisible scars - work in progress 
"Young mothers between bullets and survival"


1. Photographic and theoretical research and insight into the gun violent community ( since late December 2023 -) intimate look into the lives of young single mothers( Kevinna, Shamiqua and Toyia ) living and raising up their children in one of the most gun violent community - social housing project Mc Dougald Terrace in Durham , the murder capital of North Carolina, as they call it. 

They all came here when housing was offered to them by Housing Authority of Durham after either separating from their boyfriends, losing the house or being evicted from another housing community.

Gang violence is very present and it comes to this community always from the outside. Homicides are hardly reported on or 

nor newsworthy and the murder poorly investigated. Residents call the neighbourhood "Young graveyard" as many innocent  children have been shot by accident.

73 precent of the inhabitants are young single mothers struggling to move out. They all fear for their children that one day

they will be hit if they will not changed something. But because of their living circumstances, as single mothers without a financial help, living on the food stamps, coping with many psychological problems from the past,facing the violence regularly, the escape seems almost impossible to achieve.

Violence basically affects the behaviour and mental health of the children and their mothers, and penetrates slowly inside them. Some of the mothers already lost their children because of the gunfire in McDougald Terrace and now trying to survive the pain that the death carries. Unfortunately, they cope with it by often falling into addiction, mental instability and sometimes prostitution. Children are distracted from school, sometimes aggressive in their reactions, transferred to school for troubled children, and in later stage of the their life some join the gang because of the lack of future opportunities.

Project is ongoing  and should draw a personal struggle of young mothers who are innocently paying a price for the gang violence and their attempt to escape the violence and leave the community.

(by clicking on the picture, gallery opens in separate window)

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