Visual Story On Child Homelessness In New York City

There are more than 22000 homeless children in New York City. Andrea Elliott, investigative reporter, and Ruth Fremson, photographer, both from the New York Times, did a powerful photo story on NYC poverty called the “Invisible Child.” It is a five-part series, it is heartbreaking and riveting, but also a remarkable piece of photojournalism.

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First of all, Elliott is a an amazing investigative reporter who was rewarded with the Pulitzer Prize for one of her series in 2007.  She followed the life of a 11-year-old homeless girl Dasani and put it in words very eloquently and realistically in the Invisible Child series:

“Dasani’s own neighborhood, Fort Greene, is now one of gentrification’s gems. Her family lives in the Auburn Family Residence, a decrepit city-run shelter for the homeless. It is a place where mold creeps up walls and roaches swarm, where feces and vomit plug communal toilets, where sexual predators have roamed and small children stand guard for their single mothers outside filthy showers.”

This paragraph paints a picture in readers minds. It’s not just telling us what the story is about, but instead showing us how it really is.

Dasani in the room at Auburn.
Dasani in the room at Auburn.

 

To top it off, the photographer Ruth Fremson doing a great job in providing the most accurate and compelling images that are bringing this story to life.

"The family’s room is the scene of debilitating chaos: stacks of dirty laundry, shoes stuffed under a mattress, bicycles and coats piled high."
“The family’s room is the scene of debilitating chaos: stacks of dirty laundry, shoes stuffed under a mattress, bicycles and coats piled high.”

 

This expose journalism has provoked a strong reaction with both the readers and public officials. There were 2255 comments below the article itself. People were thanking the authors for revealing this horrors that are happening in NYC. Some felt very angry and disappointed and were demanding some kind of action from the people who are in power. Ultimately, city officials were forced to remove more than 400 children from substandard shelters.

This visual storytelling was so powerful that it made a huge difference in many peoples lives and that is what makes it so damn good.

 

 

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