A student from the University of Northampton is hoping her work will raise awareness of a homeless charity this Christmas.
Final-year Illustration undergraduate, Rozi Hathaway, has produced artwork for Northampton Hope Centre’s festive campaign, which has appeared in the local press.
Her image of a lone homeless man watching revellers enjoying a Christmas gathering is a poignant reminder the homeless can feel even more isolated from mainstream society at this time of year.
“I decided to get in touch with the Hope Centre for a couple of reasons,” said Rozi. “Primarily because I believe that homelessness is a severely misunderstood way of life, and also because I hoped that having something more illustrative would appeal to people in a different way.
“Go almost anywhere in Northampton and you can see that there are people in need, and the Hope Centre is a beacon of light to those who need that extra bit of help to get on their feet again.
“I think it’s all too easy to neglect those in need at any time of year, but especially at Christmas when there’s so much financial pressure. However, it only takes a small gesture and moment of selflessness to contribute in some small way.
“The Hope Centre asks for as little as old clothing, toiletries and torches. We’re all human, and a little gesture goes a long way. It’s this time of year, and events like the Hope Centre’s Big Sleepout in January each year which can really drive it home – most people will choose not to imagine what it’s like to be out in the cold all day and night alone, but for some it’s not a choice.”
Rozi added: “I think the Hope Centre does wonderful work; to be able to supply people with what most would believe to be so little is very important to those who are down on their luck: hot showers, classes, food, and most importantly a place to go. I hope they continue to do such great things for a very long time.”
As well as raising awareness of the Hope Centre’s work, Rozi feels her work with the charity will also boost her employability.
She said: “Working with the Hope Centre has helped me to gain public exposure with my first editorial illustration being published, and hopefully it’s the start of many more. I’m now looking forward to completing my degree course and then to hit the ground running as a freelance illustrator.”
To find out more about the Hope Centre, visit www.northamptonhopecentre.org.uk.
You can view Rozi’s work at www.rozihathaway.com.