Using Photovoice to Understand Intergenerational Influences on Health and Well-Being in a Southern Labrador Inuit Community

  • Chelsea Gabel McMaster University
  • Jessica Pace McMaster University
  • Chaneesa Ryan McMaster University
Keywords: Intergenerational communication, Inuit health and well-being, Labrador, seniors, elders, community-based participatory research, photovoice, traditional learning, resilience


This research sought to explore one southern Labrador Inuit community’s intergenerational relationships, with a focus on seniors’ perspectives and understandings of health and well-being. This knowledge is important for accessing and responding to social and demographic change to ensure a continued ability to provide for future generations. Our research employed a community-based participatory research (CBPR) approach and a qualitative, arts-based methodology, including photovoice. Participants in this study included six seniors and six youth from St. Lewis, Labrador, Canada, who were provided with cameras and were asked to take photographs that represent how their lived experience related to the research questions. Our findings demonstrated that strong relationships between older and younger generations, particularly within families, exist in St. Lewis. We argue that these relationships contribute positively to the overall health and well-being of the community. Little is known about how youth and seniors in Indigenous communities perceive one another and their respective roles in a contemporary context. Our research suggests that learning more about the factors that shape senior–youth interaction and communication in St. Lewis may lead to interventions that will support intergenerational contact and, hence, promote cultural continuity and increase overall well-being. The promotion of cultural continuity and well-being is of particular importance in Indigenous communities, given the disruption of culture due to colonialism and given that Indigenous communities with high levels of cultural continuity are healthier.


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