TEAM AND HISTORY
YOUTH FILM FESTIVAL
Dorothy Downs, Co-Founder & Executive Director, FCFF
Cole Stevens, Manager, Forest City Youth Film Festival
YOUTH FILM FESTIVAL COMMITTEE
Mike Sheriff, Manager, FCYFF
Katie Thibert, TVDSB Visual Arts Teacher & Designer
Elyse Booth, TVDSB Communications Technology & Arts Teacher
Candace Marzano, TVDSB Communications Technology Teacher
Danny Santarella, LDCSB Communications Technology Teacher
Mark Vogelsang, OIART College professor
Joceyln Deng, TVDSB Student Coordinator
Emily Sun, LDCSB Student Coordinator
Kate Nash, Youth Liaison
Co-founders, Laura Briscoe and Dorothy Downs first connected in 2018 to build this youth film festival. Dorothy had planned to include a youth film festival for Southwestern Ontario in FCFF since the inception of the festival. Laura was a passionate teacher looking to bring a school film festival board-wide in order to create opportunities for students to develop global competencies and empower their voices. It was a great connection and it made sense to elevate student voices to the entire region. The two gathered a committee of dedicated secondary school educators and quickly grew to include students, industry experts, and post-secondary support.
The TVDSB Community Connected Experiential Learning fund granted the Forest City Youth Film Festival assistance in its first year. This funding encourages learners to develop a deeper understanding of Ontario Curriculum, global competencies, student well-being, and career planning. This strongly impacted our launch and ability to reach students to make content accessible and inclusive. We have continued to work on the principles of accessibility and inclusivity since that time, and the foundation that TVDSB has given this festival is now proudly growing through all of Southwestern Ontario and beyond!
Experiential Learning coordinators throughout Southwestern Ontario have become interested in sharing the festival with students and educators to actively participate, reflect and apply their learning. Our education programs are now available throughout the province.
Today the festival continues to grow and inspire young minds. If you want to like to join our committee for this Youth Film Festival, please contact [email protected]