Hidden Stories come to Jubilee Library

A local arts charity will be giving away a new book addressing the loneliness and stigma of living with an invisible health condition at Jubilee Library on Saturday 25 May.

‘Hidden Stories On Tour’ will be at the library between 10am and 3pm as part of Brighton Fringe. 

Hidden Stories is a powerful, playfully illustrated graphic novel based on the everyday experiences of people living with conditions whose symptoms aren’t easily identifiable to others. 

The book is published by Brighton arts charity Root Experience and looks at what it’s like to live with invisible conditions ranging from anxiety to autism, diabetes to chronic fatigue syndrome. 

Visitors will be able to collect free copies of the book, meet some of the contributors, join in conversations and find out more about the project. There will also be a photography exhibition and interactive games that guide self-exploration. 

The Hidden Stories journey 

Hidden Stories began as an interactive arts project in 2017, involving months of creative workshops in Sussex and across towns and cities in the south.

At the workshops, people with invisible conditions explored and shared the challenges of their day-to-day lives through storytelling, visual arts and soundscapes. 

Millions of people worldwide are affected by these conditions daily yet often also face being isolated, misunderstood or stigmatised by society. Many are discouraged from opening up, and even seeking the support they need, for fear of being judged. 

With Hidden Stories, Root Experience aims to inspire more people to speak out about their lives, while encouraging others to listen. That’s why the charity is giving away all 8,000 printed copies at eight free events across the south of England. 

A self-help resource and conversation tool 

As well as offering a unique window into the lives of people living with hidden conditions, the book includes practical ideas for readers, such as writing a letter to the part of themselves, or condition, they keep hidden. 

Simon Magnus, artistic director at Root Experience, said: “Hidden Stories is about helping people to find their voice, but also encouraging the compassion needed in others to hear and understand those voices.” 

The Hidden Stories project was made possible thanks to a £45,150 grant from the National Lottery’s Community Fund. 

A free digital version is available to at www.hiddenstories.co.uk and you can find out more at www.rootexperience.org/hidden-project

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