People often believe patients diagnosed with dementia forget everything. One of Inspire Media’s grant recipients thinks otherwise.
21-year-old Li Gao volunteers at Mathier Pavilion Retirement Home and she believes patients with dementia still remember how to communicate, just in their own ways.
“The idea that I wanted to present through the photos was that each residents is unique and there is a way to connect with them,” said Gao.
The Inspire symposium displayed the works of all the grant winners. They also had two master classes and a keynote presentation. Yale professor Jonathan Smith spoke about the spreading of TB, HIV and Human Rights, and about his latest film with the visual epidemiology project, They Go to Die.
“What was really missing was the people who were affected by he disease and they were just entirely left out from everything and I thought their voice is really important in this debate,” said Smith.
Inspire Media holds the symposium every spring to produce socially conscious media and to engage relevant issues on local, national, and international levels.
“We also want it to be the opportunity for them to learn something new and see how art and media can be used to advance these social causes, to learn something new from our workshops and to bring people together around this common idea that art and media can change the world,” said Inspire Media co-President, Elizabeth Miller.
Students who attended the symposium praised the initiative it took for grant winners to produce their projects.
“What really struck me here about the exhibits is that it
really explores the issues of the people who have been victimized and I think
it's great that there is an organization like inspire that give people the
ability and the funds to do important journalism about the people who aren't
always covered by mainstream media outlets, it's a way of giving a voice to the
voiceless,” said senior, Fenit Nirappil, senior.
“Media can have a lasting impact on the global community whether its policy makers or just regular, everyday people can make donations and make a difference,” said junior, Joe Hooker.
And making a difference is exactly what Inspire Media set out to do.