Riverside County

Directing Change is an evaluated suicide prevention and mental health program with the mission to educate young people about critical health topics through art and promote social justice and health by changing conversations in schools and communities.
Monthly Art and Film Contest
  • Open to youth ages 12-25
  • Deadline: January 31, 2023
  • Free to participate
  • Amazon Gift Cards (up to $300)
  • All art forms accepted (visual art, film, written works, TikTok, original music and more)
  • December Prompt: During the months of December and January, take time to reflect on the past year, what you’ve learned, how you’ve changed, and your hopes for the new year. What changes do you want to see in yourself, your community or the world?
  • Special TikTok Challenge: Share your hopes for the New Year. What changes do you want to see in your community? For yourself? For your loved ones? All TikToks submitted receive a $20 Amazon Gift Card. All submissions will be judged for a $100 first place prize.

For more information, view the flyer.
Enter your work here

December Monthly Prompt:
What are your hopes for 2023?

Submission Categories: Hope, Justice, or Monthly Prompt


Submit to Contest
Annual Film Contest
  • Open to Middle, High School and College Students (12-25)
  • Deadline: March 1, 2023
  • Free to participate
  • Cash prizes for youth (up to $1000)
  • Regional winners advance to statewide round of judging
  • Award Ceremony in May

Submission Categories


  • Suicide Prevention
  • Mental Health
  • Through the Lens of Culture
  • Walk in Our Shoes
  • Animated Short
  • Hope and Justice

“New Beginning”


Heritage High School

Filmmaker: Genesis Morales


News and Awards

Riverside County Youth Place in November Hope & Justice Contest

November’s Hope & Justice contest asked youth to reflect on someone who has inspired them, supported them, or used their influence for good. Participants selected a “Mental Health Hero” as their focus, using their chosen artform to highlight someone who helps others see the possibilities within themselves, inspiring them to overcome and do great things with their lives. Congratulations to the youth from Riverside County who placed in the contest!

  • First Place – Hope and Justice: “Words of Hope” by Shayla Luong, Valley View High School
  • Third Place – Film and Written Works: “A Brick Wall” by Christian Bolanos, Landmark Middle School
  • Honorable Mention – Film and Written Works: “My Hero” by Nicole Vincent, 10th Grade, David A Brown Middle School

View the full list of November winners here.


Riverside County Youth Place in September Hope & Justice Contest

September’s Hope & Justice Contest asked youth to think about what their anchor is when going through a tough time. Their anchor could be anything that brings them joy, helps them cope, or reminds them of their reasons for living. Congratulations to the youth from Riverside County who placed in the contest!

  • Third Place – High School Art: “Feeling the Melody” by Audrey Hills, Palm Desert High School
  • Honorable Mention – Written Works: “Not Me” by Angel Rodriguez, Indio High School

View the complete list of September winners here.


Riverside County Students Recognized for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Achievements

The Directing Change Program & Film Contest announced the regional finalists in the 10th annual student contest encouraging young people to create short films and about suicide prevention and mental health.

View more films


Statewide Winners Announced in Annual Directing Change Film Contest

Statewide winners in the Through the Lens of Culture, Hope & Justice, Animated Short and Walk in Our Shoes categories were announced by the Directing Change Program & Film Contest at the virtual awards ceremony!

  • First Place Through the Lens of Culture: Polytechnic High School “Solitude”
  • Second Place Through the Lens of Culture: Murrieta Valley High School “El Secreto”
  • Third Place Through the Lens of Culture: Valley View High School “Vergüenza”
  • Fifth Place Through the Lens of Culture – TIED: Ramona High School “Transposed”
  • First Place Hope & Justice – Hope – TIED: David A Brown Middle School “White Noise”
  • Second Place Hope & Justice – Hope: David A Brown Middle School “Redefined Hope”
  • Fifth Place Animated Short – TIED: Eleanor Roosevelt High School “Out to Sea”
  • Fourth Place Walk in Our Shoes – The Superhero in Each of Us: Mountain View Middle School “Basketball Hero”
  • Third Place Walk in Our Shoes – What is Mental Health & Words Matter – TIED: David A Brown Middle School “Unfiltered”
  • Fourth Place Walk in Our Shoes – What is Mental Health & Words Matter: David A Brown Middle School “Consider The Following”