WATCH: Art Exhibition Focuses On Homeless Culture

From ignored and forgotten to seen, appreciated, and understood.That’s the transformation Richmond Futch, Jr. hopes will happen with his new exhibition. The revered Rochester artist will showcase his new work in a one night only event. The exhibit is called: Out of the Shadows - Making the Invisible, Visible Through Art. The concept is to capture the spirit of our homeless culture in Rochester and to see those fighting poverty, addiction, and mental illness as people and nothing less than that.

WATCH: A Mission To Help Survivors Of Sexual Assault

Rochester’s Nicholle La Vann is a filmmaker, an artist, and a survivor. A woman focused on giving a voice to the voiceless is now doing so with a deep personal connection. La Vann went public not long ago to share the story of her own rape at the age of fifteen, and the child she bore and kept as a result. La Vann is now on a mission ensure survivors of sexual assault have safe spaces to share their stories plus access to healing.

WATCH: The Current Media Landscape

It was journalist Walter Cronkite who was named the “most trusted” public figure in America. That was in a public opinion poll in the 1970s. Fast-forward to 2018 and public opinion of journalists and media outlets appears to be less-than-favorable. Perhaps what’s more disarming is the lack of trust the public has in the news. On this edition of Need to Know, journalists and media professionals in Rochester share their perspectives on our current media climate.

WATCH: How Race, Gender, and Rhetoric Can Affect An Election

It’s fairly easy to recall some of the rhetoric that dominated the 2016 presidential election. “Nasty women,” “deplorables,” and “bad hombres” are just a few of the phrases that characterized an historic election that people are still talking about. A new book with a local connection examines the impact of such figures of speech and how gender and racial politics were front and center in the 2016 presidential election.

WATCH: Why One Professor Is Translating The Works Of Female Writers

University of Rochester professor Sevinç Türkkan is one of few women in the region translating the work of female writers around the globe. Her published translations include the fiction of award-winning author, journalist and human rights activist Asli Erdogan. Erdogan was imprisoned for four months in 2016 by the Turkish government after being charged with supporting a terrorist organization. She was later released without being tried. As we learn on this edition of Need to Know, translating E

WATCH: The Little House On The Prairie's Alison Arngrim Dishes All

Alison Arngrim played a character that millions of people around world hated. But the actress says her popular character, Nellie Oleson of Little House on the Prairie, was a girl she grew to love.  In her memoir turned one-woman show, Confessions of a Prairie Bitch, Arngrim says Nellie Oleson aided and protected her like no other creature, real or imagined. She shares her story on this edition of Need to Know.

WATCH: Renowned Composer Ricky Ian Gordon

Renowned American composer Ricky Ian Gordon takes audiences on a deeply personal journey in his opera “The Tibetan Book of the Dead.” The work was inspired by his late partner, Jeffrey, a love gordon lost to the AIDS crisis of the 1980s. This rarely performed opera being presented by the Eastman Opera Theatre teaches us how to transition from life to death without fear.  Ricky Ian Gordon, in residency at Eastman, joins this edition of Need to Know to expand on the opera’s mission and intended im

WATCH: Former Heroin Addict Speaks Out To Help Save Lives

206 - that is the number of deaths in 2016 related to heroin, opioids, fentanyl, and related substances within the ten counties served by the Monroe County Medical Examiner’s office. That’s a number that grew 142% from 2015 to 2016. It’s also a number that the Polito family of Rochester, like countless others, feared would include their own child, Mary Jo. In 2016 they learned their daughter was addicted to heroin and life as they knew it changed. Now, Mary Jo is speaking out for the first time in the hopes of saving at least one life.

WATCH: The Story Behind "Whose Streets? Our Streets!"

Whose Streets? Our Streets! an exhibition now at RIT bears a familiar likeness to the types of imagery we’re seeing in the midst of our current political climate. This eye-opening exhibition features the work of a cohort of photographers who captured a myriad of social issues in New York City that led to marches, demonstrations, and protests in the late 20th Century and turn of the millennium. So how does social documentary photography further democracy? That’s what the exhibit explores and what this edition of Need to Know examines with key figures involved in this unique display of work.

WATCH: Remembering Fashion Publicist Eleanor Lambert

That “fashion week” concept, which is celebrated by cities around the globe, was first introduced by legendary fashion publicist the late Eleanor Lambert. Lambert is credited for putting American fashion on the global map. Renowned fashion historian, author, and lecturer, John A. Tiffany, beautifully captures Lambert’s story and legacy in his book Eleanor Lambert: Still Here. Tiffany stopped by Need to Know during a recent visit to Western New York to share Lambert’s story, give us a glimpse into his new work, and to explain the impact of clothing on our culture, our society, and our lives.

WATCH: Supporting Families With Autism During A Crisis

The death of 14-year-old Trevyan Rowe continues to haunt the Rochester community. It was on March 11th when the teen’s body was recovered from the Genesee River. Trevyan had autism. As to how this could have happened, accusations ensue. But working to find ways to ensure it doesn’t happen again has driven the work of lead partners in the Golisano Autism Center. They have developed a new plan being implemented this summer to support families with autism in crisis situations.

WATCH: Old-School Letter Writing Brings Diverse Demographics Together

From the outside they may look like an unlikely pair. One is an 11-year-old with a passion for handball, skiing and accelerated math. The other is a resident at a senior living center with a love of music - she sings in two choruses and plays in a band. They first met through a letter. It's part of a pen pal project launched by the Hillside Family of Agencies. As Hélène Biandudi Hofer shows us, what started in the form of letter-writing has now developed into something much more.

WATCH: Is Ridesharing Accessible For Everyone?

The Center for Disability Rights recently hosted a candidate forum on disability issues. WXXI’s Hélène Biandudi Hofer moderated the event last year where one question continued to come up for area politicians: Will you vote to approve ridesharing even if companies are not required to ensure people of all abilities can access rides? Fast-forward 12 months and now Uber and Lyft are both operating in Rochester. But are they operating for everyone?
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