© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2019

'Dissolving the feeling of loneliness': one woman's project to tell stories of pain

Emma Turton

After personal experience with mental illness Ofel Epicorus has started telling other people's stories.


Epicorus is running the 'A Part of Me' project, documenting mental and physical illnesses one photo at a time.

In her garage studio she has hour-long conversations with people who come to her to tell their story.

While they are talking she takes photos and chooses the best one.

She says the photo shows their pain as the stories are about hard topics such as bullying, domestic violence or suicide attempts.

Epicorus believes her project is important because of the stigma surrounding mental health.

"If there are the people, I will keep doing this," Epicorus says.

Personal experience with mental illness drives her to continue sharing stories, of which she has done 20 so far.

Epicorus believes the hardest part of the project is finding men who want to talk. She says there is probably a four to one ratio of women to men who talk.

She recently quit her job as a salesperson to pursue the project full-time because she wants to keep raising issues which the public are unaware of.

 

To find out more about the project go to; https://www.facebook.com/apartofmeproject/