Kimberly dela Cruz: “Death of a Nation” (Philippines)
Death of a Nation is a project about the shattering of Philippine democracy which has always been fragile. The story is told through the experiences of families who lost their loved ones to the war on drugs, their trauma, desensitization to violence, impunity, and grief. But there is also hope. Families of victims became part of grief and justice-oriented networks where they found a support system and built a community of their own, helping each other heal and find courage.
“Working on a project so close to home has been a rollercoaster of emotions, but what keeps me going was the belief that there is something deeper to be explored,” explains Kimberly. “Receiving the W. Eugene Smith Grant is a huge honor, but it also feels like some sort of vindication, that my perspective and vision matter, and that the stories I’ve been entrusted with still resonate even if the world has moved on. I am beyond grateful for the support.”