Curators’ Statement for Amazing People
Amazing People introduces you to ten amazing women and men who have been challenged by poverty in their lives but who are committed to creating a better life for themselves and their families. The ten include single mothers, who work tirelessly to provide for their children, and young men who are just beginning their journey to meet their goals in life. Collectively, they model for all of us the courage, caring, generosity of spirit, perseverance, intelligence, resourcefulness and grace needed to deal with life’s challenges. As one single mom said, “You have to cope with the hand you are dealt,” and all of them have demonstrated their ability to be successful in doing that.
Living in a rural area provides a perspective on life that is not easily understood. At night there is no noise, lights or action. Calmness is a product of this stillness, but inside every individual is hope and dreams – dreams that are as vivid as bright city lights. Eventually, the lack of opportunity, the disparity between wealthy and poor, and underlining racism grips you. Some escape by going to college, the military, or just anywhere else. But do you ever really escape? Many have never left their small towns. What happens to the ones who cannot leave?
How can people be amazing, even though their environment / circumstances are the opposite? Welcome to the paradox! It’s these unfortunate situations which creates dreamers. People begin to envision better lives, but their reality is brutal. This pursuit of happiness makes these individuals truly amazing. They constantly fight harsh circumstances, never losing an inch of their dream. Hope actually describes this war so many face. Being hopeful of a better tomorrow gets them through a terrible today. Smiles, laughter and love are the weapons. Family and friends are allies, but sometimes enemies.
Barbara Kingsolver said it best, “The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for? And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof”. So, these people continue to fight.
These is so much we all can learn from these amazing people.
Gordon Wallace and Lani Seikaly