Powered by community
Together, with our partners Suffering the Silence, we’re raising awareness about life with chronic illnesses and disabilities.
Our community is their community: helping share people’s stories and find support and understanding from others.
Portraits of chronic Illness
The team brought together a group of New Yorkers all of whom live with a chronic illness and/or disability, and asked them to speak about the stigma surrounding their experience of illness, but also about the power of community and of speaking out.
Breaking the stigma, building community
Charles is an advocate dedicated to education and awareness for the HIV & AIDS community. Fighting against the older narrative that came out of the ’80s and ’90s that attached a negative stigma to the community, Charles with a group of others is showing the world that you can live a thriving and happy life. The stigma attached to the community does not define you or your life.
April is a New York City-based wellness and beauty blogger. After being diagnosed with endometriosis in December of 2010, April reevaluated what matters most to her in life. April wanted to spread her knowledge and life experiences with endometriosis. She decided to turn her pain into passion and her passion into purpose by educating others about their health.
Tina is a Crohn’s patient who has spoken at medical conferences and been published widely. Her blog, Own Your Crohn’s, has won multiple awards for moving the needle on GI care for minority populations. Tina’s aim is to normalize rhetoric around stigmatized illnesses and to help patients own their ailments.
Ali is an actor, playwright, and advocate with hemiplegic migraines who combines her skills as an artist with her experience as a patient to create theatre that brings the chronic illness experience to the stage. She is also an ambassador for Suffering The Silence and writes the blog Chronically Overdramatic.
Pam is a Lupus warrior who lost everything when she was diagnosed in 2012. She lost her job. She couldn’t go to school. The hospital became home. But Lupus is also what gave her everything she has today - her strength and her community of Lupies. Pam went back to school, got her Master's, and is now a teacher living her best life.
Leah is a writer and photographer who lives with Mast Cell Activation Syndrome, PCOS, and IBS, alongside mental illnesses including anxiety, depression, and OCD. She is committed to using her artwork to not only document her personal experience with illness but act as an advocate for the chronic illness community as a whole.
Devri is a creative entrepreneur, model, and empowerment activist, who uses her experiences to inspire communities. Devri found herself working on empowering art after her diagnosis with Takayasu’s Arteritis at age 20, just when she was entering adulthood and becoming a mature woman. her work reflects the inner peace, with both writing and visuals, that she aims to find every day.