Christina Wegs 2008-2009

Christina Wegs comes to the Hine program with fourteen years of experience in public health, social work, and participatory education in the United States and internationally. She received a dual master’s degree in social work and public health from the University of North Carolina in 2001. For the past seven years, she has worked with international reproductive health and HIV/AIDS prevention and care programs, including programs in Botswana, Vietnam, and Uganda.

“I am looking for more effective ways to advocate for policy and program reform, and for more creative and inclusive ways to partner with individuals and communities,” she says. “I am especially interested in collaborative documentary work, which enables people to tell their own stories, in their own voices. This work helps communities to define their own priorities, and can be a powerful tool for initiating dialogue and action for positive social change.”

Christina completed her Certificate in Documentary Studies in 2008. During her time at CDS, she partnered with a public school teacher who uses Literacy Through Photography methods in her classroom, as well as worked on an oral history project with a local immigrant rights advocate. Her final project was an audio and photographic portrait of a visual artist, documenting his reflections on healing and transformation after a brain surgery paralyzed the left side of his body.

Christina worked with the Hyde Square Task Force in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. The organization began as an effort to reverse the trend of youth violence and heavy drug use in the Hyde/Jackson Square area. After several years, residents realized that significant changes would be possible only through sustained preventative measures that focused on developing the skills of local youth and building positive relationships among youth, families, and all residents. Hyde Square now serves more than 320 young people on a daily basis and more than 800 each year.

For more information on Christina’s fellowship, visit:

http://www.christinawegs.com

Gretchen Ferber 2008-2009

Gretchen Ferber graduated from Duke University in 2007 with a major in religion and a minor in visual arts. While at Duke, she completed several documentary photography projects including one, The Diversity of Spirituality Through Photography and Written Word, which was exhibited outside Duke President Brodhead’s office in 2007.

During her undergraduate education, Gretchen studied abroad and worked with underprivileged and troubled children in Edinburgh, Scotland, and Cholulu, Mexico. She assisted humanitarian efforts in Gulfport, Mississippi, and St. Croix, Virgin Islands. She founded the Duke/Durham Tennis Project, an after-school program providing weekly tennis lessons for thirty underprivileged students in Durham. She also did extensive local volunteer work through her church with children and the elderly.

Gretchen spent 2007–2008 working with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America organizing for social change in the Philippines.

She will be working this year in Boston with the United South End Settlements, which provides programs that address the needs of individuals and families, from infants to seniors, including pre-school and after-school child care, vacation and summer day camps, residential camping, family services, referrals and support, adult basic education and job readiness, computer classes and open access to technology in the Timothy Smith Computer Learning Center, and senior services such as home repair, benefits advocacy, health screenings and education, home visits and recreation.

“Documentary work inspires in me an urge to tell stories that are untold, to reveal issues in new light, and to understand more about myself and community in the process,” she says. “There is great power in this type of work, and I strive to effect change with creative subtlety.”

For more information on Gretchen’s fellowship, visit:

http://documentarystudies.duke.edu/projects/hine/gallery/gretchen-ferber

http://www.gretchenferber.com