Evidence‐Based Advocacy: Using Photovoice to Identify Barriers and Facilitators to Community Participation After Spinal Cord Injury

College of Nursing, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA.
Rehabilitation nursing: the official journal of the Association of Rehabilitation Nurses (Impact Factor: 1.15). 03/2010; 35(2):47-59. DOI: 10.1002/j.2048-7940.2010.tb00031.x
Source: PubMed


People with spinal cord injury (SCI) face many environmental barriers to community participation. In this article, a community-based participatory research (CBPR) project that implemented the Photovoice method with 10 individuals with SCI to gather evidence of the environmental factors affecting their participation in the community in and around Charleston, SC, is described. The specific aim of this project was to use Photovoice to create an evidence base of environmental barriers and facilitators to community participation through analysis of data based on the World Health Organization's International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health taxonomy of environmental factors. Barriers and facilitators were most frequently photographed in the built environment. The participants have started to share their evidence of issues affecting citizens with disabilities with the public and policy makers. The results of this project illustrate that Photovoice is effective in empowering individuals with SCI to address environmental factors affecting their community participation.

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    • "Succinctly defined as a process by which people can identify, represent, and enhance their community through a specific photographic technique (Wang, Cash, & Powers, 2000), photovoice entails providing study participants with cameras, allowing them to record, discuss, and communicate to others their realities as seen through their eyes (Wang & Burris, 1997). The production of a photograph and the photographer's description of the photo provide immediate data and the foundation for building shared knowledge (Newman, 2010). Photovoice is consistent with the core tenets of community-based participatory research (e.g., empowerment , participation) and has been used successfully to address a variety of serious health issues including HIV (Rhodes & Hergenrather, 2007) and chronic pain (Baker & Wang, 2006). "
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    • "In addition to the above-mentioned personal and familial problems, SCI patients seem to face numerous destructive obstacles such as poor social culture to deal with them, poor urban planning and architecture for the disabled, and many other problems at the social level. These factors, in addition to causing mental distress for them, lead to failure in their primary struggles to achieve self-care and lead an independent life.[13141516] Negarandeh et al. showed that one of the main obstacles in SCI patients’ adaptation with their new condition after the event is lack of social acceptance and support.[17] "
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    • "In addition to enabling individuals to become aware of environmental concerns, Photovoice also brings awareness of community strengths and resources. This methodology has been used in previous studies to investigate person–place relationships (Lockett, Willis, & Edwards, 2005; McIntyre, 2003; Sutherland & Cheng, 2009), health, and wellness issues (Chaudhury, Mahmood, Michael, Campo, & Hay, 2012; Haque & Eng, 2011; Newman, 2010). In these earlier studies, residents were asked to photograph aspects of their residential communities to bring awareness of environmental problems and stimulate change. "
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