Voices of experience

everyone has a story – Help share them

These are the stories of people with experience of living in poverty in the US and UK.

Get involved – share your story!

If you’d like to contribute to Project Twist-It and share your experience of poverty or your work to challenge poverty stigma, please get in touch with us at pticomms@gmail.com and we’ll be happy to feature you on the site. Share your story on Twitter #projecttwistit

United Kingdom

Photo  by Chelsea London Philllips

Photo by Chelsea London Philllips

‘paul’ (name changed for privacy), Hackney, London

After a difficult early start in life, including living in a family struggling to make ends meet and being expelled from school, 19-year-old ‘Paul’ is working with the charity, Shoreditch Trust to acquire new skills. His goal is to run his own business. ‘Paul’ talks to Project Twist-It about how stereotypes around people in poverty can hurt and he explains why increasing understanding and empathy should be a priority for us all

United States

Christine Riccionne shares her lived experience of working poverty.

Christine Riccionne shares her lived experience of working poverty.

Christine Riccionne: Charleston, South Carolina

After working multiple low-income jobs in South Carolina, Christine Riccionne reflects on what it’s like to live hand-to-mouth in precarious work. She explains how a couple of unforeseen difficulties led to destitution for her family – and to her living on the streets. Listen as she talks about what it feels like to be marginalised and why we need to wake up to working poverty rather than accept it as normal. (We interviewed with Christine in her home, with slight Aircon noise in the background).

‘Sarah’ from South Carolina works in the rental sector

‘Sarah’ from South Carolina works in the rental sector

Sarah, Charleston

The rental rates are absolutely higher than I ever imagined possible… the incomes haven’t really increased to match these rental rates.

‘Sarah’ speaks powerfully about the impact of massive rent rises on low-wage workers, who can end up trapped in short-term housing with years to wait for public housing assistance.

US Veterans


US Veterans talk to Project Twist-It about the challenges of accessing health care, the impact of mental health problems following active service, and the reality of life as a veteran.

First, Jimmy Wood talks to us about the reality of growing up in poverty – and the lack of understanding of the complexity of poverty by those who haven’t experienced it.