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J Assoc Nurses AIDS Care. 2013 Nov-Dec;24(6):539-53. doi: 10.1016/j.jana.2013.05.001. Epub 2013 Sep 21.

Taking pictures to take control: Photovoice as a tool to facilitate empowerment among poor and racial/ethnic minority women with HIV.


Poor and racial/ethnic minority women comprise the majority of women living with HIV (WLH) in the United States. Race, gender, class, and HIV-based stigmas and inequities limit women's powers over their health and compromise their quality of life. To help WLH counter this powerlessness, we implemented a Photovoice project, called Picturing New Possibilities (PNP), and explored how women experienced empowerment through Photovoice. PNP participants (n = 30) photographed their life experiences, attended 3 group discussions and a community exhibit of their photos, and completed a follow-up interview. We used strategies of Grounded Theory to identify key empowerment themes. Participants described empowerment through enhanced self-esteem, self-confidence, critical thinking skills, and control. Our findings suggest that Photovoice is an important tool for WLH. It offers women a way to access internal strengths and use these resources to improve their quality of life and health.

Copyright © 2013 Association of Nurses in AIDS Care. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Photovoice; empowerment; racial/ethnic minorities; women living with HIV

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