Pinehouse Photography Club

It's time we listen to our youth !!

Youth in a small northern village in Saskatchewan called Pinehouse are using therapeutic photography  to help change the way they see their lives.
They are using the camera lens to help them find beauty in their lives instead of always focusing on the negative. It gives them an escape from all their pain and suffering and provides them an outlet for their thoughts and emotions.

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Our group has gotten much larger and we are desperately needing more cameras, tripods, laptops, memory cards, wide angle lenses, and funds to help support the group.


Please consider donating to these wonderful youth so they can too participate!!


CBC Saskatchewan was  up in Pinehouse to do a documentary on these youth Oct 9-13th, 2018 Called "A New Lens on Life " which won national awards! :)

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Depression, thoughts of suicide, coping, and addictions with youth in northern isolated communities have been getting more attention recently. There is nothing more difficult to see then youth hurting and feeling like there is nothing you can do about it.

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In our community, we have found photography to be one positive way youth can channel their feelings and emotions.  A safe non-verbal outlet to tell their story about how they are feeling. A significant approach to changing the way we think with the use of a camera!

Our plan is to use any money we might receive to  support youth involvement and to embrace photography as a form of therapy when looking at mental health or addiction.

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Having the equipment necessary is a challenging hurdle as cameras and equipment cost money the youth just simply cant afford.

We would love to promote the works of these students with any financial help by enlarging their photos and having exhibits of their work done in the community and elsewhere.

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A report on high suicide rates was released by Saskatchewan children’s advocate Corey O’Soup highlighted the importance of youth having their voices heard in their communities.

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“Their calls to action is to people in their everyday life — their parents, their peers, the youth, their families, the community – people who can impact them daily,” O’Soup said Tuesday in La Ronge.

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From Global News:
https://www.facebook.com/GlobalSaskatoon/videos/10159882350390457/

"A club in northern Saskatchewan is helping heal and transform lives in their remote community through their photography.

It all started with primary care nurse Dre Erwin, who took up the hobby during a difficult season of his life.

“I try to use photography to try to help people who may have also had the same kind of pain as me,” Erwin said.
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“Photography saved my life.”
One day Erwin brought along a high school student Jonah Natomagan, who had been inspired by Erwin’s work, and almost instantly they shared the same passion.

“If I hadn’t gotten introduced to photography, I probably would’ve been with some of my peers, out doing drugs, drinking alcohol,” Jonah said.

High school teacher Stephanie Sonnenburg said she’s noticed a big difference in the students involved in the club.

“Photography allows the kids to find an outlet for some of their feelings and emotions,” Sonnenburg said.26158754_1539546165216402_r.jpeg


The group gathers in the village of Pinehouse, located over 350 kilometers north of Saskatoon, and over 100 kilometers away from the next nearest community, creating a unique set of challenges.

“There’s not really much to do here in Pinehouse because there’s so much alcohol and drugs,” said Laura Smith, who is a Pinehouse photography club member.26158754_1539544605144581_r.jpeg

“Isolation leads to a lot of other problems — a lot of coping problems, a lot of mental health problems,” Erwin said.

A report on high suicide rates was released by Saskatchewan children’s advocate Corey O’Soup on Tuesday and highlighted the importance of youth having their voices heard in their communities.

“Their calls to action is to people in their everyday life — their parents, their peers, the youth, their families, the community – people who can impact them daily,” O’Soup said Tuesday in La Ronge.
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Pinehouse’s mental health social worker of 17 years, Caroline Ratt-Misponas, said she has seen significant improvements in the health of the community since the photography club began.

“I fully endorse the photography club because I feel that it’s a positive outlet for children and youth especially who can have a positive outlet for grief, depression, loneliness,” Ratt-Misponas said.
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“I’m really really proud of how far they’ve come in their mental health and well-being.”

“By photos you can communicate non-verbally in a safe way,” Grade 8 student Jerrika Natomagan said.

“I’m always thinking – how can I make this community the healthiest it can be,” Erwin said.

And the healing is spreading to the rest of the community.
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Brain tumour survivor Trish Natomagan said, “it motivates me to go further in life instead of just focusing on where I’m at.”

Laine Boyd started drinking every weekend and entered a period of depression when her husband left her to raise a child alone, but was inspired by seeing Erwin’s photography on social media.

“It made me think a different way, that life can be beautiful.”
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Erwin believes the focus on having a healthy, positive lifestyle has helped his village learn positive coping mechanisms and hopes they can be an example for other isolated communities.

“There’s no greater satisfaction for me as a photographer or me as a nurse to hear that you’ve helped someone, no matter what it is,” Erwin said.

“I just want to be a role model with this photography to show the kids younger than me that there’s so much more to life than drugs and alcohol,” Jonah said."
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Our Facebook  page
We encouraged everyone to join and support our youth :)
Thank you!

Update: We have had a very successful summer and year so far! From youth retreats, cultural events, and a BC trip. We average over 300 youth a month. All thanks to your continued support. For if it wasn't for your help, it wouldn't been possible!
Dre




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Donations

  • Grace Pollock 
    • $50 
    • 21 d
  • Anonymous 
    • $40 
    • 24 d
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 27 d
  • James Nicholas 
    • $50 
    • 2 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 3 mos
See all

Organizer

Dre Erwin 
Organizer
Pinehouse Lake, SK
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