Miyoshi Smith & Ryan Saunders with David Sarasti
Two women, Paulette and Karen, talk about their lives, and how they and their children have been affected by public policy. The women are former welfare recipients, are of similar age and have had similar backgrounds, but they left the public assistance rolls in very different ways. The documentary was produced in collaboration with members of H.E.R.O. (Helping Energize and Rebuild Ourselves) Inc., which was established in 1994 out of a concern for the plight of poor single mothers and their children. H.E.R.O. works to empower these women to voice their stories, and LONELY STRUGGLES is part of that empowerment effort. H.E.R.O. founder and director Elaine Wallace notes, "These are not the stories of every single mother, but many women suffer silently with pains, poverty, sexual, emotional, and physical abuse. Karen and Paulette give them a voice."
H.E.R.O. (Helping to Energize and Rebuild Ourselves) was organized to assist women, primarily single African-American mothers and their children, to become self-sufficient. H.E.R.O. works with residents in the Tioga-Nicetown section of Philadelphia, and sponsors a teen leadership group, coordinates community meetings, and is establishing an education and training center in North Philadelphia.
May 6 & 7, 2000 - Part of Street Movies screenings at West Philadelphia Community Center and Clark Park respectively (Philadelphia, PA)