Food: On the Margins in Plymouth

Fotonow CIC have worked alongside Dr Clare Pettinger to create a documentary film to illustrate the stark realities of the lived experiences of food insecurity in Plymouth.

This film has captured the voices of six individuals in Plymouth who are, for whatever reason, experiencing food insecurity. It also hears from some front line workers, who are tirelessly supporting vulnerable people to provide them with food at times of crises.

What we see is that food insecurity is highly complex, a chronic ‘systems’ issue, that is politically driven. The research behind this film, the Food as a Lifestyle Motivator (FLM) project, is about understanding better the lived experience of food poverty and the need to give people the opportunity to express themselves and let their voices be heard. Without listening to those marginal voices, we cannot possibly create a collective solution to this critical issue.

The making of this film has been an interesting and rewarding experience. Our collaborative processes overcame some of the early challenges involved in recruitment. We are very grateful to those individuals who agreed to share their food stories on camera, as we are aware of the sensitivities involved. Participants remain firmly at the heart of our research process. This film, as a creative output will serve as a crucial vehicle to strengthen the social impact of this ongoing research, allowing the project’s findings to be expressed in a way that can inform more sustainable solutions to the highly complex matrix of issues involved in food poverty.

Fotonow CIC

Fotonow CIC are a Plymouth-based social enterprise, specialising in community-focused photographic and film projects. The company brings together expertise in education, community development and media production to develop and run creative projects that make a difference to people’s lives and in particular give voice to underrepresented groups. Lead filmmaker James Ellwood has produced socially-engaged documentary work for over a decade, often focussing on environmental and social justice themes.

Find out more about Fotonow CIC

Food as a Lifestyle Motivator

Getting involved in food can be a starting point to address other things that are 'broken' and lead to progress in other ways

The Food as a Lifestyle Motivator project demonstrates that food may also be a powerful 'lifestyle motivator' for those on the edge of society

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Creative Associates

The Sustainable Earth Institute's Creative Associates projects aim to explore novel and innovative ways of communicating research and develop a portfolio of case studies of the different creative approaches possible

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Image: Carey Marks/Creative Associates

Sustainable Earth Institute 

The Sustainable Earth Institute is about promoting a new way of thinking about the future of our world.

We bring researchers together with businesses, community groups and individuals to develop cutting-edge research and innovative approaches that build resilience to global challenges. We link diverse research areas across the University including science, engineering, arts, humanities, health and business.

Find out more about the institute