Thursday, 8 July 2010

24) The Sanctuary

Wed 7th July – The Sanctuary

I went to the Sanctuary on Wednesday evening, which is a cultural evening for the homeless with live music and craft sessions. There was a good turn out and a lively atmosphere. I made a bracelet with beads. Sally from last week was there, she made a necklace for me which was a lovely gesture. It was interesting talking to her, she has a lot of ambition, skills and the drive to set up her own business but the restrictions of money and space to work limit her success. She said,

“There is nothing pro-active I can do to get out of this situation. It should be illegal for people to have to live like this.”

Sally has a laptop, which is her life! I was talking to her about my project and she wanted to show me images of a photography project she had done on being homeless. She took pictures of images she sees everyday on the street. She was explaining how the bumps in the ground were her life and the tall buildings above were barriers that she cannot cross. She was frustrated saying that she would know more about IT than anybody inside the buildings.

I asked Sally if she would be comfortable writing down her story for my project. She said,

“Yeah, of course, I am homeless and I have loads of homeless friends I can ask too.”

I said I would give her a sketchbook and a pen, she said she didn’t need them she could type it up. I explained I really wanted the personal, hand written feel for my work. She said her handwriting wasn’t the best, but I said that was fine, I didn’t mind mistakes or scribbles. Even if people preferred to draw a picture, anything they did would be interesting.

I gave her the sketchbook and she will return it at the next soup run. I am extremely interested to see what is inside it, even as a research resource, it could be very insightful. I told Sally that she would have to explain to everyone she approached that the work may be published in some way and that they gave permission first. She understood.

There was a man called Teacup, he brought people tea, coffee and food all night.

Jack was there, the guy from Britain’s got Talent, he played the harmonica for everyone, it was really good! I told him I had seen him on youtube, he said someone had raised £100 pounds selling his autograph online, he couldn’t believe it.

I notice a lot of men have served in the army years ago. They still hold that military swagger and sense of humour.

A man and a woman dance to music and kiss.

A woman makes jewellery with our leader Tony. She made a pink necklace, pink earrings and a pink bracelet. Her gestures were somewhat child like.

A man wanted to make something for his round his dog’s neck. His facial expressions were funny, almost judging others who were they as being ‘weird’.

A large man, who had special needs came from Ulster. He told joke after joke. “You can either have money or a wife.” Etc etc

I faked laughed 3 times. Then I gave up.

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