Christine Kim, My Dog is My Home

Christine Kim, My Dog is My HomeChristine Kim has been involved in social work with the homeless for the past 6 years, focusing on the Skid Row neighborhood of Downtown Los Angeles.  Though her work, she has found that, although an estimated 10%-25% of the homeless have animals, there are only a handful of shelters in the U.S. designed to take in interspecies families. Her project, “My Dog is My Home: The Experience of Human-Animal Homelessness,” is a multi-media online and offline exhibition that Christine is developing and curating for the National Museum of Animals and Society (a grassroots volunteer-run museum that we funded earlier in 2013).

Christine seeks to illuminate the issues that interspecies families face. This project uses video, art, photography, narratives, activities, and public programming (lectures, film screenings, and a service fair) to bring to life the experience and inspire society and agencies alike to recognize and protect the human-animal bond, especially for people who have little else in their lives and find their home in the heart of an animal.

Christine writes, “Some of the people I have gotten to know through this exhibit I now consider friends. It pains me to see them struggle to access services that others get so readily because they have an animal companion. These are more than companions; they are family. They provide so much in the way of love, comfort, therapy, and socialization for the homeless.”

This important exhibition is being curated on a shoe-string budget, and the Pollination Project grant will be used to help Christine take My Dog is My Home to the finish line and ready for viewing in person (At NMAS in Los Angeles) and online (through the exhibition website.)