Hope in Shadows helps former addict

Valerie is one of the featured photographers on 2018’s Hope in Shadows calendar (Alexandra Fraser/BCIT News)

Valerie Fielding is a former addict but through Hope in Shadows, she was able to overcome her addiction and live a more fulfilling life for herself.

“I’ve been 5 years away from addiction, fortunately. And it’s (Hope in Shadows) helped me to grow in an awful lot of ways. To be strong, to be independent, and to be accomplishing something instead of being lost.” – Valerie, Hope in Shadows participant

This year, one of her photographs won and is now in the 2018 calendar.

Fielding says that because of the economic mobility provided by the initiative, she was able to show her life on a platform she wouldn’t have otherwise had.

Hope in Shadows is a photo contest aimed at helping those experiencing poverty in Vancouver and Victoria. The photographers receive single-use cameras to take pictures of the life they experience. The photos they take are entered into the Hope in Shadows contest; the winning photos are then published in the calendar.

The photographers and members of their community sell the calendars and keep all of the profit they make.

The initiative provides a way for low-income members of the community to show the difficulties they face. It also provides a chance for those facing employment barriers to earn income.

Hope in Shadows is now in its 15th year.

Megaphone Magazine started the initiative. They provide photography workshops, the cameras, and publish the calendar.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hW8Hd_diqI&w=560&h=315]


With files from Alexandra Fraser