Capturing life stories is important. It gives participants the unique opportunity to look at their lives with a positive perspective, and it saves these stories from oblivion.
The Empowerment Foundation has been capturing life stories for disregarded groups for years. In 2007 we’ve worked in Surinam with elderly people. In 2008 we helped 80+ elderly people in the Netherlands capturing their stories. 2010 was spend interviewing dozens of elderly migrants and refugees who had all kinds of reasons to live far away home.
In 2012 the Headwind project about the forgotten refugees from Bhutan delivered two books:
- The ‘Unforgotten’ photobook with images about life in and around the Bhutanese refugee camps in Nepal.
- The ‘Headwind, Laxmi’s Story’, about the life of a young Bhutanese refugee in the Netherlands.
In 2013 we’ve been working with elderly gay men and women. They have been fighting hard for equality and emancipation and acceptance. In spite of the seemingly increased openness and tolerance nowadays, many elderly are still in the closet! It is essential that more is known about them, their issues and lives. The result of this project is the book Stormachtig Stil.
By these project the Empowerment Foundation empowers groups in (global) society who otherwise would not be noticed. It is a special kind of emancipation and empowerment.