Witnesses to Hunger is a program of the Center for Hunger-Free Communities, a research and advocacy center in Drexel University’s School of Public Health. Since 2008, the program has provided resources to people experiencing hunger and poverty to speak out and share their stories with the goal of affecting public policy.
It was originally a photo project with 40 people living in poverty documenting their everyday lives and experiences. The photos have since been exhibited at the African American Museum in Philadelphia and launched an ongoing dialogue.
Gaines-Turner joined in 2008 after she received a flyer from the program.
“I was at a point in my life where I tried it my way and wasn’t getting anywhere so I gave the number a call,” she said. “It’s not easy to let people in on the most vulnerable parts of your life and share your story … and not know how people will look at you.”