Exploring the meanings of food and agriculture for Latino youth through the use of PhotoVoice in three Iowa cities
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Using PhotoVoice as a tool for participatory action research, 10 Latino high school students, from three different cities of Iowa, Des Moines, Council Bluffs and Ottumwa, completed a project developed by Iowa State University Sociology Extension. The students explored the cultural meanings of food and agriculture within their families and in their communities. Participants were asked to reflect on and describe their pictures, incorporating their points of view on the different elements that integrated local food systems. We coded their final essays in NVIVO using the Community Capital Framework (CCF) to evaluate students' experiences and perceptions of food-value chains in their communities. The results showed cultural capital and bonding social capital to be the dominant themes, followed by health and nutrition (human capital) and natural capital (emphasis on home gardens and fresh vegetables). Financial capital, built and political capital indicators were mentioned incidentally to other capitals. Recommendations in this paper center on improving the use of PhotoVoice among Latino youth.
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