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United States of America


"The alley behind my house"

This little girl lives two doors down from my house. Drug dealers live in the neighborhood, and the alley is where they sell drugs. One time my brother was riding his bike there, and he saw prostitution going on. People running from the police always go through there. It’s dangerous for her to be playing there. When I was that age, there used to be volunteers who would play games with us in the park. That program helped keep us out of trouble. It’s not there anymore.


United States of America


I took the picture of the flag with the barbed wire in front of it because I think it represents the barriers that get in the way of students reaching their goals. Some of the things it represents are bad parenting, drugs, hanging out with the wrong people and babies from having sex. I know a lot of people who have dropped out of school and all of those things have played a role for at least one of my friends as the reason they dropped out. I think if people know what gets in the way, they will prevent it from happening. That why I took this picture.

This young man is an artist in the community. He is living proof that not everything is bad in our society. He is an inspiration, not only to me, but to the younger kids. He shows us that there are possibilities out there.

This picture is my niece who is a year old and is living with me. Her father is incarcerated so she doesn’t have a father. She motivates me every day to do anything I do because I don’t want her to grow up like her father did. I love her and I’d do whatever it takes to take care of her.

This picture makes me think of all the struggles that get in the way of me succeeding. For example, bi-polar disorder runs in my biological father’s side of the family. This was a big concern for me, but I was tested and I know I don’t have it, but it’s always in the back of my mind. I had a catholic schoolteacher for sixth grade who blamed me when she lost her baby. How can you tell a sixth grade student that it’s their fault for having a miscarriage? The drain is clogged and that could be representative of all the stuff that holds me down but the basketball is there to remind me that I still need to get up and do what I need to do in order to succeed.
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