About the Project

A photography project aimed at sharing the realities of farming and ranching families is coming to the Klamath Basin.

The project is called photovoice - a process where a group works to identify and share their stories through images accessible to consumers, policymakers, researchers, and the general public.

Photovoice has been used to show the effects of flooding on family farms in North Carolina, agricultural development in Rwanda, the experiences of urban farmers in Pennsylvania, and the impact of landslides on homesteads in West Virginia. And starting this spring, photovoice will be used to share the strengths and struggles of agriculture families in the Klamath Basin.

The Ag in the Basin Photovoice Project is coordinated by Hannah Whitley, a graduate student from Douglas County, Oregon, who moved to Klamath Falls in September 2021. Hannah received research funds from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture and the College of Agricultural Science at Penn State University to answer two questions:

  1. What does it look like to do agriculture in the Klamath Basin?

  2. And what hurdles and opportunities are farmers and ranchers facing?

  1. Attendance at a project information meeting - [16 April 2022 or 23 April 2022]

  2. Photography - take pictures from mid-April to mid-July 2022

  3. Meet with fellow participants to create the photography exhibit - (date TBA)

  4. Participation in an individual interview (optional) 

  5. Attendance at the photovoice gallery presentation - (date TBA)


 

Want to learn more? Visit our FAQ page!

 

Originally from Elkton, Oregon, Hannah grew up on her family’s 500-acre ranch on the banks of the Umpqua River, harvesting beef, organic hay, and Douglas Fir timber. After graduating from Oregon State in 2017, Hannah moved to Pennsylvania to pursue graduate education in rural sociology. Her research focuses on the human dimensions of natural resources. Specifically, she is interested in studying how non-governmental stakeholders are involved (or not involved) in water management decision-making.

In 2019, Hannah partnered with the Pennsylvania Women’s Agricultural Network to create The Female Farmer Photovoice Project, a digital and traveling photography gallery that highlights the experiences of farmers in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Prior to COVID, the gallery was shown at a dozen agricultural, policy, and academic research events in the Northeast.


This spring, Hannah will recruit a photovoice cohort of 20-30 farmers, ranchers, and farm/ranching family members to participate in the Ag in the Basin Photovoice Project. Adults and children aged 7+ with some connection to Klamath Basin agriculture are encouraged to participate.
 
Participation in the projects involves a total of five steps: