I was lucky enough to go to New York as a tourist on a previous occasion. You cannot help but see the vast amount of cultures, the diverse backgrounds of the people and the overwhelming number of homeless people in the streets and in the subway train systems...everywhere. I would attempt to gain some knowledge of someone's life story, living in hardship, through conversation. Put some drawn images that capture their personal essence in a large perspex money box and sit the things they really need on top, out of their reach like food, books, mental health services, health, education and a pathway to shelter.
I guess my experience from years ago keeps coming back to mind, or my lack of doing something about the others I see here and overseas in similar circumstances continue to haunt me. New York was an amazing city with warmth and energy like you would experience nowhere else. The people who live there were helpful, engaging and inviting, so this picture is by no means a reflection of the people and city in general. I just wonder sometimes who is actually watching out for these people - how do we make the invisible people be seen? Who wants a picture like this hanging on their lounge room wall or in their hotel foyer?? I am making comment but not actually doing anything to make a difference to somebody else. I did not even talk to this guy who was sleeping on a footpath side bench down by the Hudson River the day we were at the High Line.
My aim is to work on the homeless man and the money zeppelin enough to make them more visible than everything else that is going on around them. When the money is given to the people who are capable and willing to take care of people like this (I am certain there are hundreds and thousands of them), can the invisible people become more visible. I feel like I should more carefully decide where my money goes rather than straight into the hand of that person who cannot manage it. I have left the mans feet in the Hudson River, because it is the waters that connect all of our joys and problems. It is not a pretty picture!