Youth Use Photojournalism to Talk About Community Health 

Community Blueprint was hired by the Minnesota Department of Health to implement a program that worked with youth to document successes and barriers with its Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP). Working with 13 communities across the state, Community Blueprint trained youth on how to document their communities with photographs to show public health successes and future possibilities. The participating communities were widespread and included the following areas: Cannon Falls, MN, Cottonwood, Jackson, Redwood Renville Counties, Dakota County, Grand Portage, Laporte, Mankato, Minneapolis, Ramsey, Red Lake Tribal Reservation, Rice County, Rochester, and Todd County.

As part of the photovoice project, we traveled to the various communities involved to train them on the basics of photojournalism. We worked with them to document what in their communities was helping them stay healthy and what was prohibiting health. When the photos were taken, the youth captioned them to tell a story of health in their hometowns.