CYRRC

Ongoing Project:

Flash Forward Photovoice

Researchers: April Mandrona1, Mehrunissa Ali2, Bayan Khatib3, Marwa Khobieh3 , Zainab Abu Alrob2, and Walaa Mousli
Affiliations:
Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (NSCAD)1, Ryerson University2, and Syrian Canadian Foundation3
Research Partners: Syrian Canadian Foundation
Keywords: Syrian refugee youth, arts-based research, Greater Toronto Area (GTA), integration, photovoice, photography
Go to: Methodology, Exhibit, Report

Summary

Objective: The project aims to: provide an educational and artistic platform for Syrian refugee youth to share their perspectives and integration experiences through photography; foster a healthy, creative support network; create awareness of how refugee youth are portrayed; and help to refute stereotypes.

Justification: The Syrian youth served by the Syrian Canadian Foundation face significant challenges – including low educational attainment or interrupted schooling, poverty, social isolation, bullying, discrimination, violence, and engagement in anti-social behaviours that lead to police encounters. This project connects participants to their community and develops their skills, confidence, and sense of belonging by providing spaces where they can express themselves artistically.

Practical goal: To better understand Syrian refugee youth’s integration experiences in the GTA and use photovoice to communicate these experiences to wider audiences.

Methodology

This project will use photovoice to engage 12 Syrian refugee youth aged 16-21 who are living in the GTA. Photovoice uses photography, discussion, and critical reflection to access and represent the needs, experiences, and knowledge of groups whose voices may be marginalized. The project will culminate in an exhibition where participants will present their stories and photography to the community.

Online Exhibit: Visual Tales of Integration

In early 2021, the research team launched a virtual exhibit to showcase refugee youth’s photography. Each participant chose their most meaningful photographs and a quote to display alongside the photos.

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