Type 2 Diabetes as a Socioecological Disease: Can Youth Poets of Color Become Messengers of Truth and Catalysts for Change?

Young African American woman passionately speaking into a microphone on stage.
  • Youth poets of color are able to harness their “life as primary text” to successfully communicate how social policies must be enacted to reverse the type 2 diabetes epidemic that disproportionately affects their communities.
  • The wisdom, insight and experiences of artists from vulnerable communities most affected by type 2 diabetes can create transformative health communication campaigns that align with RWJF’s Culture of Health Framework.
  • The Bigger Picture campaign enables youth artists of color to transform themselves and their audiences from being teenage targets of metabolic disease to becoming powerful and novel messengers for social change.
  • While previous research and media coverage has documented how white youth can be powerful catalysts for public policy change (via a social-media campaign against gun violence, #NeverAgain), our work demonstrates how youth of color can tackle socially-and structurally-determined health problems by applying their artistic creativity to their own lived experiences.
Resource type
Published Research

Stay Connected