SOCIAL DOMAIN & IMAGE BANK
I was commissioned by Het Beelddepot to realistically portray youth homelessness. When using a search engine to look for images of ‘homeless’, there is a good chance that you will see someone in neglected clothing sleeping on a dirty bench in a park. The current image stands in the way of an adequate approach to the problems, states Frank van Steenbergen in his dissertation Without margin, no center (2020). And a large Canadian study showed that negative images in the media have a major impact, it perpetuates negative associations. For example, it may suggest that people without a home have an alcohol or drug problem. Het Beelddepot, part of Het Bouwdepot, conducts research into these stigmas in the media. They examine the dominant concepts in the media, and the change that can be seen since the 90s. Journalistic images of Dutch homelessness has led to stigmatization and a negative self-image among the homeless people. What does life really look like when you are homeless in the Netherlands as a teenager or young adult? I followed three people, who are in contact with Het Bouwdepot, and portrayed a day in their life, where we visualized their day together.