Photo Story Ideas – Marla Jean Rooker

My principal idea for the photo story is to photograph attendee’s of the shelter at the Nashville Rescue Mission in Tennessee while I am there. These people are all homeless and many of them victims of substance abuse ranging from alcoholism to heroin addiction. The Nashville Rescue Mission is a place where the homeless can receive food and shelter each and every night but as each night concludes they are forced to stand on their own 2 feet and potentially find jobs during the daytime hours or it is the case that many of them are working on GED programs in order to obtain their completed education. The Nashville Rescue Mission does use Christ as their platform in order to instill a sense of purpose and provide their visitors with a more positive outlook on their current situation. Even though I am not religious myself I find this aspect of recovery intriguing…  I plan to tell their stories as homeless American’s through showing their connection to God and I will attempt to convey the process behind being saved and the freedoms that comes with that in the minds of the people that I encounter that have endured the struggle of not having 4 walls to surround them securely and the uncertainty that comes along with that. I know that going into this project there are many unexpected boundaries that will pop up one of them being all the people that I must communicate with in order to photograph and record these individuals. Most of this has already been taken care of but I am still getting all the paperwork handled currently. This proposal could change drastically as soon as I arrive in Nashville mainly because I do not know how private people intend to be when it comes to their religious history and possible drug history but I am willing to see how things pan out knowing that either way you slice it there will be some amazing stories that will come from these people.

Seeing that the first proposal is highly complicated and I will be taking pictures in an entirely different state I must come up with an option B. My 2nd proposal is a photostory on poverty in Statesboro. I recently found out that the percent of people below the poverty line in Statesboro is 35% and this number surely did surprise me knowing that the national average of poverty stricken individuals in the United States as a whole is 11%. Being in the position that we are in as college students we turn a blind eye to the small farm community that surrounds us where many families have children who are on free and reduced lunch, living paycheck to paycheck and not to concerned about motivating themselves to better their situation. During my short time here in Statesboro I have got to know many of these individuals mainly because of the simple fact that I work at blockbuster and blockbuster is a place where people come who are unable to pay for cable/satellite television because of credit issues. Not to be too crude but besides the obvious college student customers blockbuster attracts a clientele of individuals who do not have access to modern day technology ranging from computers to phones which in turn tells us that they are the poorer members of our society many of them being car repairmen and  construction workers that have been employed due to the growing college community. Being in this environment and knowing these people personally puts me in a unique position that allows for me to give an inside look to something that many college students would know nothing about. Many of us have parents who can easily send us money to fix our cars or we can bum a ride from our significant other or friends if our car breaks down but for many people who are right at the poverty line a car that doesn’t work early in the morning could possibly mean that it won’t get fixed for months because it is hard to save up the money in their situation, it means possibly walking to work on a cold march morning. It’s hard for us to think about going without phone service for a month just because we were unable to fork out the extra 50 dollars this month and it would be unimaginable to only have a 20 dollar walmart prepaid card in our wallet a week away from payday still having to feed a family. For this project I would follow the lives of 3 or 4 statesboro residents that are unable to avoid the constant stresses that come along with money problems, shedding light on what poverty in South Georgia really looks like.


About Marla Jean Rooker
21st century woman, taking the world by storm, and looking ravishing while doing so...

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