There is a story for every person that winds up living on the streets, but that story is seldom heard by the people passing by. To give people affected by homelessness the opportunity to tell their own stories on their own terms, London-based charity Accumulate has released a graphic novel telling the stories of 18 different people who have experienced life on the streets.
The novel is the very first of its kind and uses various mediums such as collages, poems, comics, and prose to tell each person’s story. In order to help each person tell their story best, Accumulate held workshops on everything from creative writing to drawing at a local gallery. The finished result is a beautiful yet painful 160-page novel called The Book of Homelessness.
“You have people that were leaving abusive relationships and people who were fleeing countries, where they were threatened with torture,” said Marice Cumber, founder of Accumulate. “Others were being rejected from their home or suffering violent attacks because of their sexuality. But the thing that runs like a river through the whole book is that everybody was escaping or fleeing from something.”
According to Accumulate, profits from the sale of the graphic novel will be shared amongst the authors, with a portion of the money being directed to The Accumulate Art School for the Homeless, which provides higher-level creative education for people who are experiencing homelessness. The idea is that by providing creative education, Accumulate can help increase their sense of self-worth and potential for employment.
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