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South Side Stories


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In an environment that often lack access to resources that support the development of healthy sexuality and sexual and reproductive health, youth in the South Side of Chicago tell their stories …

In an environment that often lack access to resources that support the development of healthy sexuality and sexual and reproductive health, youth in the South Side of Chicago tell their stories through ditial media. Presented by Ragnar Anderson of the Interdisciplinary Inquiry & Innovation in Sexual and Reproductive Health, at YTH Live 2014 session "Digital Storytelling for Social Change."

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  • 1. South Side Stories: Sharing narratives to reshape perceptions Ragnar Anderson, MPH Center for Interdisciplinary Inquiry & Innovation in Sexual and Reproductive Health (Ci3) April 6-8, 2014 San Francisco, CA Annual Conference on Youth + Tech + Health
  • 2. South Side Stories South Side Stories aims to create a body of social science research based on the personal narratives of youth that elucidate how structural factors such as segregation, discrimination, stigma, and violence constrain the freedom, sexuality, and health of young people.
  • 3. • Reanimate perceptions of urban youth of color • Explore ways to create research with rather than research on youth • Provide a group of young people the opportunity to explore this method of self expression • Identify ways for youth to engage in policy debates that influence their lives Objectives
  • 4. Anatomy of SSS • 3 community partner • Chicago Black Gay Men’s Caucus • YMCA (Black and Latino Achievers) • Global Girls • 6 youth advisers • Adolescents living on Chicago’s south side • 6 Ford scholars • University of Chicago graduate students from a variety of disciplines
  • 5. Anatomy of SSS • 6 faculty advisers • Range of disciplines, all with a connection to SRH • Assist Ford Scholars in their research projects • 7 staff members – project team • Digital storytelling facilitators and producers, researchers, communications manager • University of Chicago graduate students from a variety of disciplines • 51 young people who participated in the workshops
  • 6. Creating stories • 7 digital storytelling workshops • Community partners • Youth advisers • 44 young people living on the south side of Chicago • Weekend workshops • Friday: icebreakers, word clouds, basics of storytelling, story circles • Saturday: photo walk around neighborhood • Sunday: producing story in the lab
  • 7. Why the South Side? • One of the largest contiguous African American urban communities • One of the most racially segregated and isolated communities in the US • 9 of Chicago’s ten poorest communities are on the South Side • High rates of school discontinuation, obesity, asthma, drug arrests, and incarceration
  • 8. Youth on the South Side • Limited resources supporting health and growth • Experience disproportionate violence, stigma, and victimization • Sexual minority youth are particularly constrained • Few youth have opportunity to view sexuality from rights based framework • High rates of STIs, HIV, and teen pregnancy
  • 9. Essential Questions • How do structural factors and social forces associated with segregation impact sexual and reproductive health (safety and safe spaces)? • How can research, narrative, and communication be used to create “safe spaces” for youth? • Can digital stories engage key stakeholders in dialogue and activity around youth sexuality?
  • 10. Underlying Theories • Structural violence, describes how political, economic, and social policies create resource inequalities and social conditions that maintain health disparities. • Minority stress theory, helps us understand how experiences with discrimination related to minority status (race, sexual orientation, gender) affects sense of self, health and well being • Syndemics, the presence of overlapping psychosocial health problems that increase vulnerability to poor health for example disparities of rates of HIV/AIDS in urban populations of color
  • 11. Dominant themes - romantic relationships - familial relationships - self-esteem - sexuality - violence - bullying - body image - identity
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  • 15. Research & Policy • Ford Scholars: composing individuals research project • Project team: composing journal articles: • Teen health issues • LBTQ issues • Relevant policy issues METHODS:  Content analysis  Narrative analysis  Relate to relevant data
  • 16. Dissemination AUDIENCES: Screenings with discussion: • University of Chicago • Community-based screenings • Larger population of Chicago CONTEXT: - releasing by themes with discussion guide
  • 17. Project Team
  • 18. Many thanks to the Ford Foundation for their support! Thank you for your attention!