Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House - Photography Workshops

Program
Location
Hastings-Sunrise, Vancouver
Type of Program
Education, Recreation, & Arts
Social Connectedness
Wellness & Mental Health

Program Overview: Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House empowers local residents in Hastings-Sunrise (Vancouver), BC to improve the community together by providing ongoing programs and services and by supporting various community development initiatives. Frog Hollow plays a leadership role in creating our community together by connecting people and strengthening their capacity to create change.

The impact of COVID-19: When COVID-19 struck, Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House had to adapt. One of the many programs impacted by the pandemic was a planned intergenerational art project designed to bring older adults and younger participants to the organization’s field house. With funding in place, contractors hired, and local older adults experiencing increased social isolation as a result of the virus, simply cancelling the program was not feasible.

Staff and facilitators worked quickly to adjust their plans, and the result was the Zoom-based Nature Photography Workshops program. Over a six-week period, 11 older adults were taught basic photography and editing techniques, took and shared pictures guided by different themes such as ‘nature in the neighbourhood’ or ‘lines and patterns’, and met online to discuss their work and the meaning behind it with one another. An Instagram account was also created to help raise awareness of the program in the wider community. Nature Photography Workshops culminated in a socially-distanced outdoor showcase, which allowed the family members of participants to attend and ensured the program remained intergenerational – albeit in a different way than what was originally envisioned.

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Photographs from the “Lines and Shapes” and “Growth and Patterns” weeks

 

Program Impact: Nature Photography Workshops had a number of positive impacts for those who took part. Participants were excited to learn, apply, and show off new skills – something which is critically important to cognitive health as we age; the fear of the outside world that many experienced as a result of COVID-19 was reduced and physical activity encouraged; and social connections were created that reduced social isolation for those who found themselves newly confined within their own homes.

Program Strengths: While COVID-19 has been incredibly damaging and disruptive, it has also showed the responsiveness and creativity of the CBSS (Community-Based Seniors' Services) sector, as well as the resilience of older adults from across the province. The Nature Photography Workshops program embodies these characteristics and provides a valuable example of how we can rise to meet the challenge of even the most trying of circumstances by thinking outside the box and remaining dedicated to the changing needs of older adults living in our communities.

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Photographs taken by program participants

 

For more information about the Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House, click here.

For more photos from the Frog Hollow Neighbourhood House Photography Workshops, visit their instagram page here.