The stories that will appear here over the next months often speak about invisible lives and work. So it has been with the process of preparation: long months of research, working within the limits of illness, finding ways to begin. In forming the first networks of connection and collaboration there has been a sense of excitement but also overwhelm: as these hidden stories of struggle come to light, so too have the reasons why they are less heard.
Bringing together a series of stories on stigma and social change is to speak in plain terms about structural inequality. To see that people are constantly working at survival: organising, running support groups, taking direct action, lobbying. Living with demanding situations, while fighting for recognition, legal rights or basic support.
This project is a necessarily slow and careful assemblage of fragments, pieces of a complex and yet simple whole. With the hope that others will join in the process, adding their own perspectives.
As this process takes place over time, there is another hope: that we can practice patience in the process of collaboration, to allow differences and gaps. To reach for understanding, as we read across the similarities in each others stories, to see a wider picture emerge.
More backstory on how the project developed can be found here: (behindthescenes)