By Marilyn Abalos
New York – This you have to see. The Friends of the Philippines Society USA Inc. is running a photo exhibit titled FRIENDS, ART FOR HUMANITY: Reflections from Filipino American Frontline Healthcare Workers at the Photoville Festival 2021’s “Eyewitness: Who Tells the Stories of Our Time.”
The exhibit runs on Sept 18 – Dec 1, 2021 at the Brooklyn Bridge Park at the Empire Fulton Ferry Park area featuring the works of Rosem Morton, a registered nurse and photographer.
Organizer Edwin Josue quipped that the Photoville exhibit is meant to inform the community of the sacrifices of the Filipino frontliners to counter the escalating Asian hate crimes.
With the support of the Philippine Consulate General of New York and Philippine Airlines, the Friends’ photo exhibit reflects Filipino American healthcare workers on the impactful moments of the last year, sharing their stories of pain, courage and resilience as frontline workers in New York City.
Since the onset of the pandemic, healthcare workers have been forced to operate in difficult conditions as they continue to save lives on the frontlines. Nearly 32 percent of all the registered nurses who have died of COVID and related complications in the U.S. are of Filipino descent.
In the New York-New Jersey area, Filipinos were hit especially hard since one in four works in healthcare. Their stories often depict battle scenes, surrounded by death and helplessness, as hospitals continued to be overwhelmed with patients, compounded by staff and supply shortages. These healthcare workers reflect on the impactful moments of last year, sharing their stories of pain, courage and resilience.
A number of healthcare workers are featured at the exhibit. Rosem’s work revolves on the theme of the Friends of the Philippines Society USA: “Empowering Diversity in Humanity, Integrating Multiculturalism in Humankind.”
In addition, an educational program series and a classical concert will also be presented during its three-month campaign.
Morton is based in Baltimore, Maryland. She is a National Geographic Explorer, an International Women’s Media Foundation Fellow and a We, Women Photo artist. Her storytelling focuses on the intimacy of everyday life amidst gender, health, and racial adversity. Her work has been recognized by Pictures of the Year International and the World Press Photo 6×6 Global Talent.# (Featured photo: RN and documentary photographer Rosem Morton with EMT Karen Shoker; photos by Edwin Josue)