(working title)

A film from Belltower Pictures

‟Stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign, but stories can also be used to empower and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity.”

Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, TEDGlobal 2009

The stories we hear about residents of America’s urban housing projects usually come from news reports. They are lurid stories of violence, gangs and drugs. To most Americans, public housing and urban poverty are “issues” that remain out of sight and out of mind.

In this film, the issues take on human faces. We’ll get to know people who have lived, and some who are now living in “the projects.” We will see and hear them tell their own stories... stories that will make the viewer smile, cry, laugh, and quite possibly get angry.

This is not a dry, issue-focused documentary filled with statistics. It is a family of compelling stories, told in first-person by people who are living their lives in the face of incredible challenges. We’ll see and hear how they’re succeeding… and in some cases, failing while trying to find a safe, affordable home in which to raise their families.

‟The cycle of poverty is firmly centered on housing and where you live. It impacts every other aspect of one’s life, framing your expectations and your opportunities.”

Heather Crislip, CEO of Housing Opportunities Made Equal (HOME) of Virginia

‟The longer you stay in poverty, the less likely it becomes that you will ever get out… [it] is like quicksand. Once it grabs you, it keeps constraining your options until it’s got you completely.”

Linda Tirado, Hand to Mouth, Living in Bootstrap America

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