Eric Gibson is one of many Liberian refugees living at Park Hill Apartments in Staten Island, New York. And like numerous others in the community, he's struggling to find jobs and make a living.
Liberia has received humanitarian, development, and security assistance, but until it has economic security—sustainable jobs and distribution of humanitarian aid—peace is fragile and only temporary.
Bridgestone uses the Super Bowl's halftime show as a public relations tool to clean up its image as it faces a class-action lawsuit for alleged human rights abuses and use of child labor in Liberia.
Members of the hip hop group Wu-Tang Clan grew up in Park Hill; they call it "Killer Hill" or "Crack Hill" because of the violence and crack cocaine found on the streets. On a recent October weekend three shootings took place in front of 55 Bowden, the six-story brick building with the reputation for being the most violent. When Eric stands in front of the building, with his oversized jacket and his too-big pants slung down low, he keeps his back against the wall for security. He’s seen one too many young people shot or jumped from behind to know that anything can happen at anytime.
Post-war Liberia is not an easy place to make a living. But for many Liberians who have fled the 14-year civil war to the U.S., this country is just another battlefield.
Jion's one leg is carrying him as fast as it can go. As he races down the field on his crutches the stadium is silent, waiting to see if the goalie can block his shot. Jion kicks.
The amputee soccer players—formerly child soldiers of opposing rebel groups—are held up as the new hope of Liberia. Although these players win medals, they still struggle to meet their basic needs.
Reporter Ruthie Ackerman and photographer Andre Lamberston travel from Staten Island to Liberia, exploring the challenges faced by youth in post-war Liberia and those who've arrived on American soil.
Pulitzer Center grantee Ruthie Ackerman talked to Cholo Brooks, a Liberian journalist who worked for the BBC African Service during the war, about the challenges facing Liberian youth after the war.
Everyone knows poverty exists, and seeing people beg for money isn't all that surprising. But in Liberia, some of these young men who beg are the ones praised and handed medals on the soccer field.
After more than a decade of civil war, many Liberian youth end up at the margins of the society, struggling to better themselves and reintegrate into the society.
Charles and Mabel were former fighters who went through the demobilization process thinking it would help them escape poverty. And like many ex-combatants, they were disappointed and let down.