The mission of TB Photovoice (www.tbphotovoice.org) is to use images, stories and dialogue to elevate the voices of individuals directly impacted by TB so that they, as well as their communities, can improve their overall health.
TB Photovoice uses the process of “photovoice” to amplify voices of persons directly affected by TB, partnering with community health organizations around the globe.
TB Photovoice trains community facilitators to implement “photovoice”, whereby they assist individuals impacted by TB to document their own health realities by taking photographs of the people, places and systems that affect their every day life and health experience. The photographs represent what is happening in the participants’ lives and serve as a point for discussion about what can be done to inspire change in their communities. They share and examine their photos and stories among a small, trusted group, then amplified their messages to the community and beyond through forums and health events. Often these photos and stories address the root causes of TB as well as the stigma, discrimination, and need for improved prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of TB.
Outcome Highlight: Nuestra Casa
Although there are universal themes threaded through many of the individual TB Photovoice groups, each group has its own unique creative, qualitative outcomes. “Nuestra Casa-Our House” is an internationally recognized initiative created by Mexico/US TB Photovoice participants. With the help of South African photojournalist Damien Schumann, they created a 3 dimensional, interactive house that highlights the life and stories of people affected by TB, their surroundings and their messages of reality and hope. It was created as a tool for advocacy, communication, and social mobilization promoting awareness among decision makers, health care providers, and the public in general to get involved in concrete action to prevent the spread of TB, reducing the number of cases and deaths caused by it. This initiative is currently on exhibition at the University of Texas-El Paso, Centennial Museum from January 17th to December 5th, 2012.
TB Photovoice Founder, Romel Lacson, lost his dear wife Claudia and their prematurely born daughter Emma to TB complications in 2004. TB Photovoice became a non-profit 501(c)(3) in December 2010 with a vision of a world where the issues closely associated with TB, as identified by persons affected by TB, are paramount and put to the top of the agenda for communities around the world. If TB is to be eradicated, it will take social and cultural reforms ignited by those affected, as well as biomedical advances.