Project originated via Seattle University Journalism Fellowships on Family Homelessness.

A young woman, fearful for her life and that of her baby, flees from the baby’s abusive father — but, like many young mothers escaping domestic violence, she has nowhere to go. Brandy’s story is captured by Real Change assistant editor Rosette Royale in a new multimedia project he calls “The Gravity of Abuse.” Nearly two years in the making, this dramatic chronicle is the result of Rosette’s 2010 Seattle University Journalism Fellowship on Family Homelessness, and it appears in Real Change starting next week.

Rosette is known for his captivating long-form narratives, such as “The Man who Stood on the Bridge,” which won the national Sigma Delta Chi award from the Society of Professional Journalists in 2008. The four-part “Gravity of Abuse” series begins in the May 9 issue of Real Change and is supplemented with audio and video. But you don’t have to wait till then; read a brief excerpt of the series here.

With his trademark empathy and inquisitiveness, Rosette digs deep into the lives of both Brandy and her boyfriend, Richard, to learn how a small-town girl becomes a recovering meth addict and young mother on the run — and what turns a charming and likable young father into a pagan skinhead and three-time convicted felon.

 The Seattle University Journalism Fellowships on Family Homelessness and Project on Family Homelessness are housed in the Center for Strategic Communications at SU and funded by a grant from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. For more information about this and other projects including “The Spiral” public art sculpture at Seattle’s Lake Union Park and “Looking Into Light” in Olympia, please visit the Seattle U Project on Family Homelessness Web site or contact Catherine Hinrichsen, hinrichc@seattleu.edu.