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McMaster Okanagan Office of Health & Well-being

Prioritizing Optimal Health & Well-being at McMaster

SCORE! Photovoice Exhibition


The Photovoice study is a research project nested within the SCORE! program where we are aiming to understand the perspectives and experiences of newcomer families (youth, caregivers) as it relates to access to greenspace and uptake of nature-based programs/activities. Led by postdoctoral research fellow, Dr. Sujane Kandasamy, this qualitative study was built upon community engagement activities and collaborations with community partners.

We recruited 39 participants who completed the initial focus group, photowalk (and photography mission), and photo-elicitation focus group. From the analysis, we developed 4 themes:  

  1. Peace and Beauty
  2. Memories of Home
  3. Safety & Cleanliness
  4. Welcoming Strengthened and New Opportunities

On Saturday March 4, 2023, we held a Photovoice exhibition, “A Landscape of Colours, a Lifetime of Memories,” in the atrium of the Mohawk Stoney Creek Campus. The purpose of this activity was to engage with community members and multi-sectoral leaders on the findings and to strengthen the conversation on action-oriented steps that we can to address barriers and uplift facilitators. 26 participants across different local sectors (school board, city, local organizational leaders, etc.,) engaged in the guided tour of the exhibit, contributing to rich dialogue on how we can work together on these issues. 

Experience the Photovoice Exhibition that was on display at the March 4th, 2023 Event below. 


Peace and Beauty

Text reads: "Theme One. Peace and Beauty. Nature is vital but undervalued. Colour changes throughout the day (sky) and seasons (autumn leaves) symbolize beauty. Serene natural spaces are rare but appreciated." Black and white photo of a hand holding small green leaves. Black and white photo with a bush that has red leaves. Black and white photo of a residential building. The only colour is green trees and grass. Photo of a colourful sunset above a residential neighbourhood. Photo of a rainbow above a green space.

Memories of Home

Text reads: "Theme Two. Memories of Home. Perspectives of nature and natural spaces are rooted in memories of one's homeland. Preferences for activities and programs relate to such memorable aspects especially for adults who may have very recently immigrated to Canada." Photo of a rocky and sandy hill overlooking small buildings. Photo of a dessert on a sunny day. Photo of a waterfront next to a mountain at sunset. Photo of two people cooking meat over a charcoal stove. Photo of a red flower bush with green leaves.

Safety and Cleanliness

Text reads: "Theme Three. Safety and Cleanliness. Experiences of nature include all senses (smell of the rain, sight of green space, noise of waterfalls, and oppositely noise of traffic/cars, etc.). Safety concerns (ex., wood-chip covered parks) and cleanliness (littered-grounds) inhibit access. Cars driving on the road at night. Photo of a sidewalk. Photo of wood chips on a park playground. Photo of a garbage can at a park. Photo of a basketball net.

Welcoming Strengthened and New Opportunities

Text reads: "Theme Four. Welcoming strengthened and new opportunities. Many indicated a preference to engage in programs to better connect with nature/greenspace, gardening, apple picking, farm visits) and connect with family and friends. Many want to build a sense of belonging and be part of initiatives that strengthen their community. Taking place both at central points in Riverdale but also outside of the community borders. Parking lot. Photo of a billiards table. Photo of a kid biking. Photo of a water fountain structure. Photo of a windmill in a field with green crops and a blue sky.