Supports & Strengths
Despite ongoing challenges, photographers were extremely resourceful and resilient. They spoke frequently of important supports and sources of strength. Family and friends, community group, and staff and case managers were sources of guidance and social support. Additionally, photographers seemed to draw their strength from each other, encouraging and learning from each other.
Family and Friends
Affording opportunities to reconnect with family proved to be an important aspect of the program because data revealed that family and friends have been essential to recovery.
I went from nothing to finally having a place called home... Being able to care not only for me but for my beautiful grandbabies
The weekly Housing First Community Group was an important resource that helped photographers navigate their existing concerns and challenges. The group taught valuable life skills and encouraged friendships among individuals at different stages of housing and recovery, including photographers who had been housed for just 2 months to those housed for over a year. Additionally, it provided a space for photographers to express their grief, celebrate their successes, and make plans for their lives.
Case Managers & Staff
One of the most meaningful supports included case managers and program staff. Case managers regularly attended community group meetings and participated in the PhotoVOICE project. Photographers expressed that they felt that case managers genuinely cared for them and understood their challenges. Even those photographers who no longer needed as much case manager attention expressed deep respect for case managers. Perhaps most importantly, case managers and staff provided “good examples." Having all of these supports in one place once a week were important for maintaining stability.