In collaboration with the Boys and Girls Club of San Bernardino, several psychology students at Cal State San Bernardino will present a “Photovoice Gallery” photo exhibit at the Waterman Gardens public housing project on Tuesday, Jan. 29, from 4-6 p.m.
The event, which is free and open to the public, will take place at 402 Alder St. in San Bernardino.
The exhibit will be a collection of photographs taken by children, aged 8-16 years old, from Waterman Gardens.
In collaboration with the CARE (Community and Relationship Enhancement) research group at CSUSB and the Boys and Girls Club at Waterman Gardens, the children were given cameras and asked to take pictures in their community of things they liked and things they wished they could change. Over the course of the past few months, the children voiced their opinions and discussed possible solutions to the problems they found in their community.
Under the direction of CSUSB psychology professor David Chavez, the university students conducted community-based participatory research. This approach required faculty and students to work in collaboration with community members in a manner that shares power to address real life issues.
“I have an incredible group of dedicated students who have given much of themselves, while simultaneously engaging in service and research in the community,” said Chavez. “Their passion for making a difference in the world really comes through.”
Chavez explained that through the partnership with the Boys and Girls Club, the students chose Photovoice to engage in the community-based participatory research because it enables the community and researchers to work together to address important topics identified by the community as needing change.
“By teaching the participants to actively observe and document their world focusing on problematic issues,” said Chavez, “they learn to critically reflect, articulate their thoughts about these issues and collaboratively problem solve. This skill development helps empower the youth towards problem solving in their community.
“Through the use of photographs and guided prompts, this method develops a narrative, thereby giving voice to those often silenced in society,” Chavez said.
“It has been amazing to watch the children’s progress throughout the Photovoice process,” he said. “Their ability to develop and engage in complex processes has been evident throughout this project.”
The Photovoice Gallery project provides an opportunity to showcase the children’s work to parents and the community. It is also intended to be a springboard for attendees to explore their own thoughts and contributions in solving these social issues.
Attendees were encouraged to R.S.V.P. by Sunday, Jan. 27, at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, call (909) 798-4599 ext. 212 or professor David Chavez at (909) 537-5572.
For more information about Cal State San Bernardino, contact the university’s Office of Public Affairs at (909) 537-5007 and visit news.csusb.edu.