Bringing homelessness into view
Graphic design students from Northumbria University are at the forefront of a new campaign to raise awareness of homelessness...
Winning students Charlotte Ashcroft, Laura Blain, Angela Burnell, Laura Caughey and US student Bridget Harper, devised an “Out of Sight, Out of Mind” campaign on behalf of The Cyrenians to highlight the fact that homelessness is an issue that affects people throughout the year, not just at Christmas.
A flashmob they coordinated saw dozens of people sit down on Northumberland Street in Newcastle to highlight the plight of the homeless. Their innovative campaign is also featured on advertising, leaflets and posters on buses and Metro trains and stations across the city.
Student Angela Burnell said: “We discovered that The Cyrenians support 1,200 people on a daily basis and offer a bed to 200 homeless people every night. That got us thinking about what Newcastle would be like if those spaces weren’t available and how that would impact on the lives of homeless people.
“By asking homeless people to take part in the flash mob on Newcastle’s most iconic street, we wanted to show that while homelessness is often out of sight, it is an issue that is always with us.”
Mike Pinkney, Senior Lecturer in Graphic Design, added: “The flashmob was an exciting way of visually illustrating the numbers of homeless people the Cyrenians look after every day of the year, who would otherwise be living ‘on the streets’ of the North East.
“The students have benefited enormously from working with such a dynamic and innovative charity as the Cyrenians on this live project.”
Ollie Batchelor, Executive Director of The Cyrenians added: “At the Cyrenians we work 365 days a year helping some of the most vulnerable and disadvantaged people in the North East. Just because people are out of sight shouldn’t mean they are out of mind.
“The students at Northumbria have done an excellent job in helping us to bring this message in helping us bring this message to the attention of more people.”
For more information about the Cyrenians please visit: http://www.thecyrenians.org
Visit http://www.itv.com/tynetees/homeless-flash-mob19833/ to view a video on the Tyne Tees Regional News website.
Date posted: December 19, 2011