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Creativity and Imagination in Public Health

Updated: Jul 5, 2023

Dulce Romero-Urbina, intern for SisterWeb's Evaluations Department, led a Photovoice Project with SisterWeb clients in 2023. Photovoice is a participatory qualitative research tool used in community-based research. It’s a powerful way to help us understand others and connect with each other. In the Q&A below, Dulce shares her experience with this project, how she came up with a creative and tangible way to share data, and next steps in her public health journey.

What inspired you to make a quilt to share these client stories?

I knew I needed to create something to display the client's images and quotes, so I started brainstorming ideas. I remembered that SisterWeb staff started making their own quilt during their spring retreat. I got inspired because I myself love to sew. I thought that it would be neat to display the images and turn them into an interactive display with the quotes behind them.

What was the process of making the quilt with client quotes like? Did you learn anything new?

It took a lot more planning than I had anticipated. I had to go through all the videos and transcripts and pull out the best quotes that represented every client and that also aligned with the selected image. I came up with my own design. The images and quotes had to be printed on fabric, so I ordered them. I had to gather all the materials, do lots of cutting and pinning. This is my first quilt, so I made several mistakes. I didn't realize that the edging was going to be one of the most difficult parts of it. I learned that making a quilt is so much fun, and even more when it includes so many beautiful images and quotes. I also learned to pace myself, and even though I wished I had done it sooner, for me it was more important to get it done the best way possible.

What do you hope people take away from this art piece you created?

The more time I spend making these creative projects, the more I realize that art is powerful. Being creative and imaginative in the field of public health does make a difference. I wish more organizations and agencies would use art to showcase the amazing work they are doing. I hope people will reflect on the fantastic work that SisterWeb is doing, and that it does make a difference in the lives of so many people. These are just some of the voices. I can imagine someone touching an image and really feeling those words. Every person shown there is as real as it's every word.

What are the next steps for you after your SisterWeb internship?

This is such a great question. As I am about to finish my internship, I am also getting ready to take my last class requirements and complete my Master of Public Health (MPH) this fall. I love the community I live in, and I plan to use my degree to help and empower children, youth and mothers. I can see myself starting my own non-profit and create programs catered to the youth and families in my community. Thank you so much for the opportunity to work with you and use my artistic talents as well. It means a lot to me.

Click here to learn more about this and other projects by the Evaluations Department at SisterWeb.

The introduction and questions for this blog post were written by Sofía Carbone, SisterWeb's Communications Coordinator. Question responses were written by Dulce and edited by Sofía.

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