The Blog

Follow along as we work towards systems change and help create better outcomes for kids in our community.

PhotoVoice Project: Your Story Through Photography

August 27, 2014

Come September, The Winnipeg Boldness Project will begin a new section of our research and we’re looking for community members to directly participate in this activity.

The name of the activity is PhotoVoice. In short, this is the practice of storytelling through photography. Cameras are distributed to community members for a predetermined amount of time, during which they will take photos of their community and surroundings. Each photograph taken is accompanied by a written caption or story as provided by the photographer, which results in a very impactful and visual narrative.

At the end of this process we will be holding an exhibit for public viewing where we showcase the photographs taken, in order to celebrate the accomplishments of the artists. All submissions will also contribute to the Winnipeg Boldness Project community action research process and help to shape our overall strategy.

We are currently recruiting approximately 30 community members to participate in three separate PhotoVoice activities to take place in 2-week increments over a period of six weeks. The first group will begin on September 9, with additional groups to start on September 23, and October 7, 2014. Participants must dedicate approximately 8 – 10 hours of their time to this project and will be given a gift for participation at the end of the two-week period.

No previous experience with a camera is needed, as we will provide an orientation at the beginning of each two-week session. Children and youth can participate but we ask that the children be no younger than 4 years of age and that they have a parent or guardian participating alongside the child.

This is a powerful opportunity to share your story, your experiences and your vision through photography for a community that supports successful and healthy children and families!

If you are interested in participating in the Winnipeg Boldness Project PhotoVoice activity then please contact our research manager, Gladys Rowe at or (204) 790-BOLD (2653).

Land Acknowledgement

The Winnipeg Boldness Project resides in and works on the ancestral, traditional, and contemporary lands of the Anishinaabeg (Ojibwe), Anishinabewaki (Oji-Cree), Dené, Michif Piyii (Métis), Nêhiyawak (Cree), and Očhéthi Sakowin (Dakota). We recognize that we have benefited from and continue to benefit from colonization on the Treaty 1, Treaty 3, and Treaty 5 Territories.

It is important to also acknowledge how we benefit in this territory at the cost to Indigenous Peoples. Winnipeg has been drinking clean water for over a century via an aqueduct from Shoal Lake. In 1917, 3000 acres of Treaty 3 was declared property of the city of Winnipeg to build the aqueduct. This aqueduct was built over ancestral burial ground, to build these structures, the ancestors were disinterred and reburied. Construction of the aqueduct changed the waters significantly, causing the peninsula to become a man-made island. This now isolated Nation faced many challenges as a direct result from this aqueduct; Necessities like water, groceries, schools, and mail were only accessible via the dangerous trek to the mainland. Lives of adults and children were lost crossing to and from the mainland. Freedom Road, an all-weather road access finally opened summer 2019, over a century after displacement. This road, a testament to the success of Indigenous-led solutions, helps bring materials to build schools and a water treatment plant.

“I always think of it, even when I turn on the tap I’m like this comes from our community and this water probably contains our ancestors and the spirits of our ancestor. I think about the hardships of the people from Shoal Lake 40 who have gone through so many things for the benefit of Winnipeg’s drinking water,” says Angelina McLeod.1

Another benefit we reap in Winnipeg at a cost to Indigenous Peoples and land is the Hydro Electricity Development in Treaty 5. To optimize water movement for greatest power production the Province of Manitoba increased waterflow by creating the Churchill River Diversion in 1976. The modification of the waterflow caused flooding, shoreline erosion, and changes to water quality. This destruction of habitat has caused disruption to waterway travel, fishing, and hunting.