Congratulations to Avery, Star, Gavin and Andrew, the winners of our 2021 Youth Photovoice Contest! This year’s contest theme—Thrive—asked young people: what people, places, or things help make the Bennington area great? Submissions were reviewed by a panel of community leaders and ACT members, and winners receive a prize pack that includes a membership to the Bennington Rec Center, gift certificates to the Bennington Bookshop and Benner’s Pizza, and ACT swag!
Thank you to our judges: Jeannie Jenkins, Bennington Select Board; Lt. Camillo Grande, Bennington PD; Jess Bouchard, Queer Connect; and Sophia Anisman, ACT Youth Representative.
Here are the winning shots, as well as their responses to how their photo subject inspires and supports a healthy community.
Avery, Mt. Anthony Union Middle School
“The Bennington Rec Center has always been a fun place to go to but now it is one of my favorite places because I joined the Bennington Marauders swim team. The best thing about going here almost every day of the week is that we are a family. The pool is a very safe space for all of us and most of my teammates are some of my closest friends. The coaches are amazing and supportive of all of us and it’s just a great place to be.”
Gavin and Andrew, Mt. Anthony Union High School
“Gavin and Andrew of Bennington, Vermont are inspiring a healthy community. Barbershops are institutions with deep reservoirs of trust in the Black community. Some pioneering programs to train barbers as health advocates started in the 1900’s. Published studies show that these programs could make a difference in conditions that afflict Blacks at higher rates than Whites. When barbers were trained as health educators and connected to healthcare professionals, they helped clients lower their blood pressure and increased rates of cancer screenings.”
Star, Arlington Memorial High School
“I chose this picture of daffodils because they add a little sunshine to the area. They give people something to look forward to after a long and cold winter. These particular daffodils reside in my front yard. My family works hard to make the yard look nice, and these daffodils are a cheery reward. Daffodils come back every year without having to be replanted. Watching the flowers grow back is a long-lasting spring tradition.”
Thanks to all who shared their (photo)voices and perspectives with us this year!