Our Philosophy, Vision and Goals:
Sitting on a porch in the Ninth Ward, a neighborhood usually overlooked until it was made famous by the floods that ravaged New Orleans, four children who recently returned home closely examine photographs. As they look at the images they have captured on film, stories flow forth of what the pictures mean to them: what that broken down house looked like before the storm, how they used to ride their bikes through that church lot, how that heaping mound of garbage is actually a pile of all their messed up things. The children are absorbed in their art. Their stories are rich, and they tell them with enthusiasm. Their laughter is beautiful and contagious.
Through our work with returning kids in New Orleans’ communities, the healing power of the creative process has become apparent. We seek to empower children through art, and to help them find their voices through photography, writing and other creative mediums. With cameras that we provide, the children take pictures of their lives. Thus far, they have documented everything from cleaning house, to sunsets, to military personal in their neighborhood, to the arrival home of family members. Weekly group meetings offer a safe and nurturing environment for children to openly share their photographs, stories and impressions of their changed world, while also cultivating creative and emotional tools that will help them for the rest of their lives.
In New Orleans, as in other parts of the United States, there is an absence of services that address the emotional and psychological needs of children from low-income families. This is especially problematic here and now, in the Gulf South after Hurricane Katrina. The political climate is heated, the city is changing at a neck-breaking pace, and the children are still being lost in the shuffle. We believe there is a need for services for these children, and we believe in the power of the creative process. It is the meeting place of these two beliefs that The New Orleans Kid Camera Project has emerged. Our goals for this project are as follows:
Education and Professional Opportunities