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A photographic exploration of family burn camp

Armstrong-James, L; Harcourt, D; Rumsey, N; Williamson, H; Cadogan, J


Laura O'Brien
Occasional Associate Lecturer - HAS HSS

Diana Harcourt
Professor in Appearance Research

Heidi Williamson
Associate Professor in Applied Health Research

J Cadogan


Background: The psychosocial impact of a burn may include adjusting to changes in appearance as a result of the injury such as scarring, or in some cases, amputation. There are a number of interventions to help young people manage the challenges of a burn injury including burn camps, which are specially designed activity holidays for children with burns. This study explored the experiences of the entire family at a specialised weekend long family burn camp; employing photo-elicitation which has been used to evaluate activity programmes in the past, but to date has not been used in burns research.

Methods: Six families were given a camera and asked to take photographs of their time at camp.
Participants took an average of 21 photographs and were asked to select 8-10 salient photographs to discuss during the interviews.

Findings: The interviews were analysed using thematic analysis and produced three main themes: new activities and experiences; having fun without feeling different; and support from those who understand.

Discussion: The use of photo-elicitation was found to be an effective tool for engaging the families in the research and encouraging them to recall and speak openly about their time at camp. Overall, camp provided the families with a safe environment to relax and have fun, and the chance to speak to other people who had been through a similar experience. Children were able to have fun without worrying about their appearance and adults were able to address their feelings towards the injury.


Armstrong-James, L., Harcourt, D., Rumsey, N., Williamson, H., & Cadogan, J. (2014, July). A photographic exploration of family burn camp. Poster presented at Appearance Matters 6, Bristol, England

Presentation Conference Type Poster
Conference Name Appearance Matters 6
Conference Location Bristol, England
Start Date Jul 1, 2014
End Date Jul 2, 2014
Acceptance Date Jul 1, 2014
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Public URL
Additional Information Title of Conference or Conference Proceedings : Appearance Matters 6