The Don’t You Want Me project is a global social impact photography project telling stories of LGBTQ+ people whose lives have been transformed by the arrival of their rescue dog.
Coupling compelling images and personal narratives, we aim to show that individuals of all stripes have the ability to transform their lives, given love from their rescue dogs. The question of ‘who rescued who’ becomes universal, no matter how you identify.
Society has been conditioned to respond with indifference, fear and loathing to anyone 'different', or falling outside 'traditional' lifestyles and genders. Hate by some, affects us all. Queer and trans people have a unique experience of gender, identity and family. By helping them tell their previously untold stories - with the help of the bond they share with their dogs and through images and storytelling - we are starting on the road to help create a more compassionate society.
Help us to continue unfolding these stories by consistently connecting with people in the global LGBTQ community. With your support, we can reach them!
Your kind donations will go directly toward these THREE crucial costs:
TRAVEL AND INTEGRATION: While our early stories are unfolding in urban or populated areas, many potential participants are in harder-to-reach, isolated communities. You will be helping to fund their integration into the project and be a part of bringing their voices to the forefront, by covering costs associated with getting one of us to them, or helping them come to us.
VIDEO COVERAGE AND EDITING: One big step in broadcasting these stories in a stronger and more intimate way, is to use video documentation. Your donations will go toward employing videographers and editors within the queer community - especially ones who have been marginalized and/or unemployed - whose skills can help inform our sessions with personal insights that might otherwise be missed.
EXHIBITION AND VISIBILITY: Getting Don't You Want Me in front of as many eyes as possible involves exhibiting and promoting it. Your generosity will enable us to display the project in different types of physical locations around the world. This would involve printing and framing visual materials, renting venues, and promoting our work. We also want to be able to provide an honorarium for each queer or trans volunteer giving their time and skills to assist with events and exhibits.
We aim to make Don’t You Want Me part of a Universal Theme that ultimately resounds around the world, so join us and be a part of making history!
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Together, let’s change the narrative.
ABOUT THE DON'T YOU WANT ME PROJECT:
Photographers, dog lovers and humans on a mission Jack Jackson (Toronto) and Deb Klein (UK via Brooklyn) connected overseas in a blast of serendipity involving the mutual admiration of each other’s work, a friend in common across the globe, close ancestral UK roots, and most importantly their shared belief that all people and animals - including the overlooked, underserved and marginalized - have a right to LOVE and RESPECT, which informs their work and their images.
The often harrowing journey that their subjects experience, and how their stories can help everyone, is what drove Jack and Deb to create the Don’t You Want Me project.
Kicking off in Toronto, Brighton UK, and NYC, this on-going photo project (and ultimately book) reaches out across borders, from North America and Europe, and onward. We currently have the work hanging in two locations in Toronto, and one is currently on display in Brighton in November - tying in with Transgender Awareness Month - and will subsequently make its way around London and Sussex this Winter.
Deb and Jack are currently shooting sessions for the project in Brighton, UK, London, and Toronto, respectively.
We are seeking a diverse pool of participants who identify as LGBTQ and who have a rescue dog (or dogs). This relationship must have had a significant transformative effect, and potential participants should be willing to share their stories.
***The project is still in its infancy and we are aware that our current participants do not yet fully represent the diversity of the queer and trans communities.