Photo Voice Project

Images and words are a truly powerful combination that can help change our world. That is the main idea behind Photo Voice—a growing support method that allows individuals to creatively combine words and personal photos to raise awareness about important issues in their communities.

Paterson youth participated in P-CASA’s Photo Voice campaign, and the results—as seen in the photos on this page—were outstanding.

Growing up in Paterson you see a lot of people struggle.
People living life, fighting through the hustle.
But one thing that everyone knows
Is that it’s not about what you say, it’s what you do that shows.
Paterson is a place that’s filled with amazing minds.
That’s not something that every place has, and it is because we are one of a kind.
We know that there’s a path that we have to take.
And we will do what we have to , no matter how high the stakes.
Paterson is really a beautiful place to be.
From the nice parks, memorials, green grass, and tall trees.
I, for one, love my community.
No matter what others say about where we come from.
We keep on moving forward, we stay strong, and keep calm.”

     - Female,  Age 17

“It’s good to see that people can still see the beauty in Paterson, the beauty in the people, the beauty in you and me. Paterson is not just a place for crime and sadness. It’s a place for unity, so leave the past behind us. There are still people out there who still care about the city. We need to step up, clean up, stand up, it’s no biggy – so fight! When we win the fight, our path will be clear.”

       - Female, Age 16

“Youth are an often unheard voice within our society,” explains Andriana Herrera, Program Manager. “Through this project, P-CASA empowered Paterson youth to tell us what they are experiencing. We wanted them to use their voices and creativity to let us know what would make our city a better place today, tomorrow and far into the future. With Photo Voice, they had that opportunity.”

Participants in P-CASA’s Photo Voice campaign were encouraged to connect thoughts and feelings about the changes that they wanted to take place in their communities.

The concept of Photo Voice was first discussed by Caroline Wang and Mary Ann Burris in an article entitled Photo Voice: Concept, methodology, and use for participatory needs assessments. The goal was to allow people (particularly young people) the opportunity to identify, represent, and enhance their community through photos. 


Other Opportunities to Bring Positive Change to Paterson

P-CASA understands that we can accomplish much more by working together with the wonderful people of Paterson. If you or your organization want to help build a safer and healthier Paterson for our youth, join us as we work to eliminate underage drinking, tobacco, and substance use.

There are many ways to get involved:

  • Attend P-CASA meetings
  • Participate in a P-CASA subcommittee or working group
  • Provide access to survey participants
  • Help distribute prevention messages and materials
  • Advocate for policies and ordinances that align with P-CASA’s goals and mission
  • Provide insight and solutions to community concerns
  • Represent P-CASA at community events and meetings
  • Recruit community members to join and participate as P-CASA members