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Story Publication logo September 17, 2007

Liberia: Civil War Amputees Sleep, Beg on Streets

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Reporter Ruthie Ackerman and photographer Andre Lambertson travel from Staten Island to Liberia...

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Many amputees who have fought in the 14-year civil war are considered social rejects because of their disability as well as their involvement with the devastating war. Some amputees join a soccer league and receive much recognition for their talents. Yet, these same soccer stars still live on the streets of Liberia begging for money and food. David Gibson and his friends are amputees who beg together every Saturday and pool their money so they can eat together at night.

Pulitzer Center grantee Andre Lambertson and Ruthie Ackerman travel from the Park Hill community in Staten Island to the slums of Monrovia, Liberia's capital. They examine the process of reintegrating and rehabilitating Liberian youth after the war, on both sides of the ocean.

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Three women grouped together: an elderly woman smiling, a transwoman with her arms folded, and a woman holding her headscarf with a baby strapped to her back.

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