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What happens when you give 100 homeless people disposable cameras? True works of art.

These stunning works of art give us a glimpse at what it's like to be homeless in London.

What happens when you give 100 homeless people disposable cameras? True works of art.

In July 2015, a London art group gave 100 cameras to members of the city's homeless population.

The organization, called Cafe Art, is dedicated to empowering those affected by homelessness to express themselves through art and photography.

For their latest project, the group distributed 100 disposable cameras to homeless Londoners along with some basic photography training courtesy of the Royal Photographic Society.


Each photographer had 27 shots, and they made them count. Photo from Cafe Art.

Photographers were asked to take photos centered around the theme "My London."

Of the 100 cameras, 80 were returned and roughly 2,500 photos were processed. Of those, 20 photos were selected to be included in an upcoming 2016 calendar.

Calendar cover photo by ROL.

The group has been putting out calendars since 2012, and they have raised nearly $70,000 in the process.

All money raised from calendar sales is reinvested back into the project — to cover printing costs, to pay the photographers, to buy art supplies, and to cover the cost of classes.

January 2016: "Tyre Break, Hackney" by Desmond Henry.

The 2016 calendar preorders are underway on the group's Kickstarter page.

Just days after launch, they'd more than doubled their target of a little more than $7,000. Once the calendar is released on Oct. 12 (two days after World Homelessness Day), it'll sell for $15.40.

February 2016: "Everything I Own or Bags of Life, Strand" by David Tovey.

More than 7,500 people in London slept on the streets during 2014-2015.

Across England, around 112,000 people reported having battled homelessness. While these numbers are relatively low compared to, say, New York City, which saw its homeless population hit a record high of more than 59,000 people earlier this year, it's not the number that matters but the people who make it up.

Homelessness can stigmatize and dehumanize this vulnerable population.

June 2016: "Colour Festival, Olympic Park" by Goska Calik.

By providing insight into their lives, Cafe Art helps fight stigma surrounding the homeless population.

When we're able to see the world through someone else's eyes, we can better empathize with what they're going through. By providing an outlet for a marginalized group — in this case, people experiencing homelessness — Cafe Art is helping to connect them to a world in which they might not feel welcome.

September 2016: "Left Boot, East London" by Ellen Rostant.

Want to learn more? Check out this video below featuring interviews with Cafe Art organizers and photographers.

Simon & Garfunkel's song "Bridge Over Troubled Water" has been covered by more than 50 different musical artists, from Aretha Franklin to Elvis Presley to Willie Nelson. It's a timeless classic that taps into the universal struggle of feeling down and the comfort of having someone to lift us up. It's beloved for its soothing melody and cathartic lyrics, and after a year of pandemic challenges, it's perhaps more poignant now than ever.

A few years a go, American singer-songwriter Yebba Smith shared a solo a capella version of a part of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," in which she just casually sits and sings it on a bed. It's an impressive rendition on its own, highlighting Yebba's soulful, effortless voice.

But British singer Jacob Collier recently added his own layered harmony tracks to it, taking the performance to a whole other level.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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