The humble hamlet of Ville Tecii is found in the hills of the stunning Transylvanian countryside, in central Romania.
Life is simple, horse and cart is the preferred mode of transport and for those lucky enough to have a house, it is basic at best. The Romani Gypsy community dwelling on the edge of this hamlet is a stark reminder of how a member state of the prestigious European Union can house such extreme poverty. With the lack of basic food, shelter and public utilities, there is naturally a resulting lack of hope. UK-based charity, The Grassroots Trust, are pioneering efforts to restore that hope through the building of houses for those most in need. 54 homes have been built in the last 10 years and slowly, lives are being changed and communities impacted. The eight subjects featured in this series are all prominent members of the community. They were photographed to paint a picture for the wider world to see, their faces - and the stories they tell - transcend any language barrier to highlight a need which is little-known. A lady whose son ran away two weeks ago - the tears still raw in her eyes… a walnut forager whose hands are permanently blistered and dyed from the labour… a fairground mechanic who is out of work due to an injury… a mum whose day is spent hand-washing her growing family’s clothes, using a wheelie bin as a water butt. There is a fine line between existing and living, this community treads it gently.