PHOTOVOICE is an engagement and empowerment strategy that uses photography as a tool for social change. It gives any group the opportunity to record, reflect on, and critique personal and community issues in a creative way.
The aim of this project is to motivate participants to be actively involved in decisions that affect their own lives, while decreasing stigma and broadening understanding of their personal struggles. The resulting exhibit, REFOCUSING THE LENS, features the work of five participants who have documented their personal experiences with mental health, eager to represent them to the outside world.
Act quickly, By DK
In my personal experience with mental illness things tend to move – they either get better or worse. They don’t stay the same for long. Navigating this reality is like trying to follow a map to figure out how to get to the side of wellness. The right side is so easy to make sense of and get through, while the left is near impossible. Its funny how in the midst of my struggle it always seems like I’m on the left side… until things get even worse and more confusing, as they have in the past. I notice that I often use the fact that its tough to work towards wellness as an excuse to not move towards it. To stagnate. To not be courageous. It’s clear that I must take action to stop things from getting worse again because if I stagnate then they will and then moving towards wellness will seem an even more insurmountable task. I won’t make the same mistake again but this will require seeing my strengths and looking for positives in my path.