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October 8, 2014

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‘Hope in Shadows’ praised as vital source of local empowerment

Pivot Legal Society photo project builds community by helping people, says FaoroPivot Legal Society photo project builds community by helping people, says Faoro

VANCOUVER—With the launch of its 2015 calendar at a packed awards ceremony on Wednesday morning, the Pivot Legal Society (PLS) celebrated the twelfth anniversary of its Hope in Shadows project to a chorus of praise from community leaders and union sponsors, including CUPE BC.

Hope in Shadows is a community-based photo contest and calendar project for low-income residents of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.  By using photography as a vehicle for people living in poverty to share their stories and represent their community on their own terms, the project reinforces the power of stories to create connection and transform lives.

At the ceremony, held before a packed meeting room at the Carnegie Centre, 38 awards were handed out, including for photos adorning next year’s calendar.

CUPE BC Secretary-Treasurer Paul Faoro, presenting two jury awards, praised Hope in Shadows as a vital source of local empowerment.

“Projects like this take pride in our community while truly helping people,” he said.  “So we have been pleased to be strong supporters of this project, and all the other work that Pivot does throughout the province, and we are proud to continue that support.”

CUPE BC provides support for PLS projects through the Colleen Jordan Humanity Fund.

PLS executive director Katrina Pacey, opening the event, said that Hope in Shadows has helped transform the community and societal attitudes over the past dozen years by sharing images of beauty, pride, strength, hope, and courage where so few before existed in mainstream media.

“These calendars don’t just stay in the community.  We have also sent them to South Africa, Europe, and the U.S. So people outside this country may not know about the Downtown Eastside, but they know of a community that’s strong, thanks to this project.”

For more information about the 2015 calendar, visit

For more photos of the ceremony, visit the gallery.


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