Low Income Women Speak Out through Photovoice Projects in Winnipeg and Saskatoon

Thursday, August 12 2010

Public policies have a big impact on the lives and health of women living in poverty. Yet low-income women are rarely given a voice in shaping these policies. In the fall of 2005, Prairie Women's Health Centre of Excellence began working on two projects to address this situation, in partnership with two community-based organizations, the Winnipeg North End Women's Centre and the Saskatoon Anti-Poverty Coalition. Together they initiated photovoice projects with small groups of low-income women in Winnipeg and Saskatoon.

Low-income women are often subject to careful scrutiny and surveillance by others. Rather than putting them under the lens, photovoice puts them behind the lens and allows others to see the world through their eyes.

In each project, women received training from a professional photographer and discussed the ethics of taking pictures of other people. Then each woman was given a disposable camera and encouraged to use the camera to take pictures that would represent her experiences of living in poverty, the barriers and the supports found in her community, and the policies and programs she would like to change or keep.

To learn more and see a selection of images from these photovoice exhibits, please visit the Prairie Women's Health Centre of Excellence website at


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