Aim | For participants to learn new skills and tell their own story through photography; to create an accessible visual and self documented time-stamp and history; to increase awareness and understanding in the wider community about a refugee/immigrant's experience; to forge connections and support the building of communities around the participants; to create affinity within the refugee and immigration community, and wider community as a whole.
Team | Working closely with co-project manager, Kathryne Racich, there were 11 organisations who came on board: Cameras4Change who brought on board Nikon, Lowepro and SanDisk, DiverseCity and MOSAIC (refugee settlement agencies), SIETAR (Society for Intercultural Education, Training and Research), This Open Space, SML Print & Copy, VAST (Vancouver Association for the Survivors of Torture) and Capture Photography Festival.
Results | Participants embraced the workshops provided, and took over 2,000 photos between them during the project. The week long gallery in downtown Vancouver welcomed over 300 visitors. Press coverage of the project included interviews on Co-Op Radio and City Breakfast Television. The exhibition was extended to two other venues including Surrey City Hall. (See more on the blog)
Testimonial | “The community photography project initiated by Cameras4Change that our refugee clients were able to participate in gave those clients the rare opportunity to learn new skills and in a supportive setting which facilitated self-expression. The workshops that Maxine and Kathryne facilitated enabled the opportunity for refugee clients from different cultures to come together, interact and learn how to capture through photography what their new life in Canada looked like. They were then able to share those visions and photographs with the public which enabled the local community to gain greater insight into the refugee experience. This experience has been invaluable to everyone involved. It was remarkable to see these clients thrive while working on this project and proudly share their experiences and work with people they would not usually interact with. It empowered clients by providing the opportunity to visually document how they see their new chapter and created affinity within the refugee community and the wider community as a whole.”
Laura Mannix | DiverseCity | Manager – Refugee and Specialized Programs