By HALEY BOND
Students at Homer High gather in the art room to participate in PhotoVoice, a program that provides opportunities to stand up and speak up in the community through conceptual photography (http://www.photovoice.org/). The activity allows students to learn about a prominent issue in Homer- irresponsible consumption of alcohol- bringing attention to the problem in a creative frame.
Each week, peers are provided a word such as “belonging” or “loss” to snap and discuss with the class the following FOL meeting, which includes activities such as picture taking practice, obtaining peer consent, and coming up with good conversation icebreakers.
“Students get along very well in this class, it’s a comfortable environment,” remarked Brett Merrow, a participant in PhotoVoice. Individuals are assured their confidentiality and opinions will be respected throughout the group.
Meetings take place every Thursday during FOL in Ms. Tetor’s art room, and are instructed by Tara Schmidt. They encourage students to express their true emotions through the project and work with others to spread awareness of the alcohol abuse problem. The ultimate goal is to further educate the community of problems that need to be addressed. PhotoVoice is a small step towards success, starting from the initial source and building understanding.