'Beauty is hope': Non-profit aims to show domestic abuse survivors in different light

Local photographer aims to show domestic abuse survivors how beautiful they are

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but for women and men in Fort Worth, pictures are literally changing lives.

Rhonda Burnson runs the "Choose Courage Foundation," a non-profit supporting survivors of domestic abuse by documenting their stories of strength and resilience through photography. 

"I was looking at these women and I realized they didn't know how beautiful they are. I wanted somebody to show them," Brunson said. 

Hairstylists, makeup artists, lighting crews, and wardrobe experts all donate their time and talents for the photo shoots. Survivors like Virginia DeTuro say the resulting photos are transformative.  

"When I first saw the photos I didn't recognize that woman. Now I recognize her and I am her," DeTuro said. 

The Choose Courage Foundation has since taken it's mission across the country, working with survivors in Nebraska and Philadelphia.

"I see this going national. Beauty is hope and we want to spread that," Brunson said.

Brunson's subjects are men and women who range in age and background. 

"This problem doesn't discriminate," Brunon said. 

Thankfully neither does the Choose Courage Foundation. They plan on continuing to take powerful photos that shatter the pre-conceived images of domestic abuse and empowering lives along the way.

© 2017 WFAA-TV


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