feature: ‘silent noise’, photographer cedric nzaka’s series on suicide awareness

October 14, 2015

South Africa-based Kenyan photographer Cedric Nzaka launched a series to fight the stigma and secrecy that usually surround suicide.
He tells us: “Silent Noise is a suicide awareness campaign that delves into the parallels of one’s immediate unflawed appearance and the well hidden stories desperately needing to be told.”
“Most African countries do not report data on suicides to the World Health Organization. African authorities often record suicide as “death by unnatural causes,” creating difficulty in compiling accurate statistics. Ostracization of individuals and families is common, which explains in part why suicide often is hidden. On many African countries’ statutes, suicide is a criminal act. African nations’ limited mental health specialists and inadequate mental health infrastructure are compounded by underfunding of research and the official system for reporting deaths. There is a stigma and prejudice towards mental disorders in Africa, especially around communities of colour, which has made it very difficult for young people suffering from mood or body disorders to be allowed to acknowledge it, let alone seek help.” “We want to introduce a culture of TRUTH. A culture that speaks to our pain as much as it does our joy. A culture that creates spaces for us to safely unload our problems. A culture that welcomes and embraces your truth with love and acknowledgment. And most importantly, a culture of truth that affirms our full humanity.”
Nzaka published the series through his platform Everydaypeoplestories.
Check out some of the images below.