“I’ve Got Friends Here” — Stories from Issan House

Date: Jul 13, 2017 By: greystonbakery

A few weeks ago I visited Issan House, a supportive housing facility for HIV-positive poor people, an hour north of New York City. The facility was founded in the 1990s by Zen teacher Bernie Glassman as one of several social-service organizations in the area, collectively called the Greyston Mandala.

I photographed and interviewed three men: Darvin Edwards and Cole Preston, who are current residents, and Arthur Davis, who is a former resident and now a social worker employed by the facility. Each of these men has confronted great difficulties and spoke to me frankly. I intend to represent them here in the same spirit of respect and love as Bernie Glassman had when he founded Issan House. I hope you read their stories with this intention, too, and find your own ways to amplify the voices of people who are too rarely heard.

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