Through the Eyes of Children


Kim Vradenburg
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

Through the Eyes of Children combines the creative perspectives of ten homeless children and one artist/outreach worker. The Burnside Gorge Community Association Homeless Families Outreach Project aims to help homeless families find safe and affordable housing. In 2003, in the Victoria Capital Region, the Outreach Workers saw 229 families and their 389 children. We asked some of these children to take photos of things that represent their experiences with homelessness or being at risk of homelessness. The result is a powerful message about the raw reality of the lives of homeless children and their families in Greater Victoria.

Rusted T-posts and sculpted wire mesh form the body of the display, which holds thirty-six photographs taken by the children and printed by the artist. Bare metal buckets unrelieved of their price tags provide the foundation for the free-standing piece and convey the relentless and inextricable relationship these children and families have with money and their challenges of coping with the housing situation in our city. The children's messages of isolation, searching for roots and uncertain futures cannot help but tear the blinders from our privileged, housed eyes.