The Social Justice Film Festival is committed to showcasing the work of youth on the critical social justice issues of our time. Since 2013, we have made a concerted effort to include youth voices in our annual program, even including a special “Youth Visions” award category in 2013 and 2014.
We have also involved youth from Rainier Valley in the jury process for our Youth Visions submissions, hired youth as interns, held workshops with youth on the role of film in affecting social change, and provided free screening tickets to youth from low-income neighborhoods in Seattle.
Scroll down for a sampling of our past programs and some of the Youth Visions award-winning films.
“Thank you so much for working with our mini-term class and showing us the social justice films. We really enjoyed learning about how film can address social change and were inspired by the pieces you showed us and the discussion we had.”
– Colleen Carroll , a teacher at Hyla Middle School
“We have about 25 members of our Black Student Union. The hurdles for many of our students to attending an evening event outside the neighborhood are pretty significant. Removing the cost hurdle and connecting them to a community that they have contributed to with their own creative film, which really came at the very beginning of the Black Lives Matter movement, is a great opportunity that we’re excited to offer them.”
– Paul Fischburg, social studies teacher at Chief Sealth High School, regarding the free tickets for youth in 2016
2014 Award-Winning Films
Gold Jury Prize – Youth Visions – Riffing on the Dream, directed by students at Chief Sealth High School
African-American students at a Seattle high school appear on camera to give candid, un-rehearsed answers to questions posed by their fellow students. These powerful voices open a doorway into their world that will make you question stereotypes.
Watch the film here.
Silver Jury Prize – Youth Visions – Out of Focus, directed by Adrian Arce and Antonio Zirion
Out of Focus is a collaborative documentary about arts, culture, and everyday life inside a prison for minors. It was shot during a photography and video workshop with young inmates at the Juvenile Community for Specialized Treatment in San Fernando, Mexico City.
Bronze Jury Prize – Youth Visions – Lie, directed by Lisa Jiang
Ying is an illegal immigrant struggling to make it in America. When she applies for a job in the fashion industry, it is with the naive hopes of gaining a work visa. However, being so used to hiding, she has spun a web of lies that ultimately puts her daughter, and her freedom, in danger.
2013 Festival Winners
Gold Jury Prize – Youth Visions
Poetic Justice Project, directed by Matthew Evans
Silver Jury Prize – Youth Visions
Ultramarine, directed by Matthew Earl
Bronze Jury Prize – Youth Visions
Unreasonable Suspicion, directed by William Herasme
Youth Visions Honorable Mentions
The Dogmatic, directed by Lance Oppenheim
Tribute to Trayvon Martin, directed by William Herasme