December 4, 2023

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Throughout a time when social injustice has by no means appeared extra essential, Canada’s first ever Social Affect Movie and Artwork Competition (SIFA Competition & Gala) want to showcase the movie and artwork that’s talking to right this moment’s most essential points in society.

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Organizers introduced lately that the SIFA Competition Crimson Carpet Gala and Awards Ceremony will happen in 2021.

The pageant will invite filmmakers, producers, artists, photographers, not-for-profit organizations and companies to submit their tasks to be acknowledged in one of many occasion’s social affect movie and artwork awards.

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Prizes for class winners will embody a social affect award, money, the announcement of winners in a Canadian nationwide newspaper, the projection of the movie or showcase of the challenge on the SIFA Competition in 2021, an invite to attend the SIFA Competition Crimson Carpet Gala and Awards Ceremony in 2021 and the royalties for his or her movie from on-demand views.

Submissions for the SIFA Competition will probably be accepted till Dec. 31, 2020, with the SIFA Competition Awards and Gala happening Aug. 6-8, 2021.

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Social issues have at all times been a part of Thi Be Nguyen’s life; she additionally believes that by means of artwork, we are able to carry consciousness and affect constructive change on this planet. After arising with the imaginative and prescient for the pageant in 2017, Nguyen enlisted the assistance of Sean St. John, Government Vice President, Managing Director, Head of Fastened Earnings and Co-Head of Threat Administration Options at Nationwide Financial institution.

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Because the co-founder of the SIFA Competition, St. John hopes the pageant will give voice to the essential work being completed all over the world to positively change society.  By means of the pageant, each Nguyen and St. John need to present filmmakers, artwork producers, not-for-profit organizations and anybody delicate to social points an opportunity to showcase their tasks.

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Under is our latest interview with Thi Be Nguyen and Sean St. John. For extra info on the Social Affect Movie and Artwork Competition, go to

You first had the inspiration to create the SIFA Competition in 2017.  What transpired up to now three years in your life that prompted you to start out this challenge?

Thi Be Nguyen: The previous three years have been extraordinarily busy in my life. On high of my day by day life with my household and work, I produced two documentaries, was concerned in no less than six charitable organizations and traveled loads. With the unprecedented pandemic that compelled confinement and its repercussions on society, it additionally helped me “decelerate” and replicate alone life and tasks.

Throughout this pandemic, we now have seen how social causes affect communities all over the world. Don’t get me incorrect, social advocacy has at all times been round, however I believe it has been much more elevated throughout this disaster. I’ve at all times been considering studying about society all over the world from its historical past, to its tradition and artwork, and its social points and evolution. By means of UniAction, a charitable group I based to carry consciousness to social causes, I wished to discover a manner that I may do that globally. Moreover, I’ve discovered an ideal founding companion in Sean St. John, who, proper from the beginning, felt engaged by this initiative. Due to this fact, I believe it was the appropriate time to formally launch the Social Affect Movie and Artwork Competition (SIFA Competition).

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Are there any particular social causes that you just hope the SIFA Competition will carry to mild, and the way do you consider artwork and movie can encourage change? 

Thi Be Nguyen: The SIFA Competition goals to present voice to all social causes. Aside from bringing consciousness, what is essential to me is that every social trigger we carry to the general public can generate constructive options by means of peaceable dialogues from the viewers. We want to have interaction the viewers in having their very own reflections, and to assist carry constructive options to what they’ve realized by means of the movie and artwork that will probably be exhibited throughout the SIFA Competition.

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I believe there are a lot of methods to encourage change, and thru movie and artwork is considered one of them. Pictures converse a thousand phrases. Tales can encourage and inspire. Historical past can educate and affect. Songs can contact the soul and convey feelings. A bit of artwork or pictures can ignite a response.

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Movie and artwork are supposed to entertain, so already the viewers will really feel some type of emotional attachment to what they see. Many documentaries and artwork productions create consciousness and thus affect the viewers’s view on social points. Some is likely to be impressed to make adjustments.

What kind of submissions are you trying to find and what are the factors and pointers that you may be following for the award course of?

Thi Be Nguyen: The SIFA pageant submission entry is open till the top of December 2020. There are over a dozen classes that we need to acknowledge, from characteristic and quick movie/documentary, TV collection, theatrical, songs, work, pictures, poetry to books. Principally, we need to see any artwork that has social points and social affect at its coronary heart. We invite producers, filmmakers, artists, charitable organizations, companies, or any particular person or group worldwide to submit their impactful tasks to the SIFA Competition Awards. There will probably be a jury committee of consultants in several fields that will probably be evaluating the tasks. As much as 5 nominees will probably be chosen in every class and award winners will obtain a recognition award, a symbolic bursary and media protection.

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We additionally goal to acknowledge a person or group within the inventive trade with the World Social Affect Influencer Award.

Sean St. John, as co-founder of the SIFA Competition, what prompted you to work with Thi Be Nguyen and what are your hopes and objectives for the occasion?  

Sean St. John: We’ve labored on philanthropic tasks at Nationwide Financial institution collectively, particularly Proper To Play, and have grown to respect and recognize one another’s ardour to do extra, to assist others in our personal little manner. When Thi Be introduced the concept to me, and being an avid fan of artwork myself, particularly of up to date artwork and pictures and documentaries about folks on the whole and icons who modified the world, it immediately spoke to me. After we received off the telephone, I instantly despatched her an e-mail saying, “that is an unbelievable thought, thanks for considering of me. I need to be concerned.” So right here we go… prepare.

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My hope is that by doing this pageant, we’re making a stage for promoters of change, a stage the place they are often heard and given the prospect to inspire others to assist these causes that talk to them.

The SIFA Competition will give a louder voice to the social advocacy work being completed all over the world.  What situation or points do you assume particularly have to be addressed and the way do you assume this pageant will assist?

Sean St. John:  I’m extra excited to study from others. I’ve my areas of focus that resonate with me personally, like most cancers, indigenous accessibility and kids’s rights, however what I really feel must be addressed shouldn’t be the driving force. I need to hear different tales, as a result of it’s from listening to these tales that consciousness begins, and it’s only by means of consciousness that we’re pushed to assist make a change.

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