The following provides a step by step overview of the entry process. Adult advisors, we recommend that you download the Getting Started Guide with useful tips to help your participants submit winning entries!
1. “Like” Directing Change on Facebook. This way you will receive notifications, tips, and announcements about the contest, and you can post questions to the Directing Change Team.
3. Identify an adult advisor at your school or organization. All participants that are associated with either a middle school, high school, college, university, community-based organization, program, club, or other entity must select an adult advisor for their team. The adult advisor is someone who is not on the film submission team. This is required so we can connect your school, club, or organization with free prevention programs and resources and they also qualify for cash prizes. The adult advisor does not need to have knowledge of or expertise in film making or the subject matter (suicide prevention and mental health).
4. Select a submission category and review the content guidelines carefully. There are seven submission categories.
- Suicide Prevention (60-second PSA): This category asks for a 60-second film that educates young people about the warning signs for suicide and how to offer support to a friend.
- Animated Short (30-second PSA): This category asks for a 30-second, animated film about suicide prevention.
- Mental Health Matters (60-second PSA): This category asks for a 60-second film that encourages young people to get help and support friends with mental health challenges.
- SanaMente (30-second PSA): This category asks for a 30-second film in Spanish (with English captioning) that promotes mental health and encourages people to visit the www.SanaMente.org website.
- Through the Lens of Culture (60-second PSA): This category still requires participants to choose mental health or suicide prevention as a focus, with additional requirements including adding captioning and exploring these topics through the lens of different cultures.
- Walk In Our Shoes (60-second PSA): This category asks for a 60-second film that encourages the viewer to “walk in someone else’s shoes” and learn more about mental health or suicide prevention. This category is only open to middle school students.
- Hope & Justice (accepts submissions in all art forms): This category is an opportunity for youth living through history to express their feelings and to inspire others through art. Hope & Justice will be accepting submissions monthly, in any art form.
5. Submit an Intent to Direct Form to let us know that you are planning to submit a film and in which category. Submitting the form does not obligate you to submit an entry, just as not submitting the form does not disqualify entries, but it helps us with the planning process. Only one per film team, please!
Also, be sure to check out the Submission Toolbox for every category which includes tools (such as the logo end slate and the title slide template) that are required with your film submission, and resources to help you with the content of your film or art.
- Suicide Prevention Toolbox
- Mental Health Matters Toolbox
- Through the Lens of Culture Toolbox
- SanaMente Toolbox
- Animated Short Toolbox
- Walk In Our Shoes Toolbox
- Hope & Justice Tips & Resources and Hope & Justice end slate
7. Sign Release Forms and provide them to the adult advisor. Filmmaking and creating art requires discipline and dedication to the craft. Youth filmmakers and participants are honor-bound to acquire all necessary permissions and signatures, including parent/guardian signatures if they are under the age of 18, and accept the liabilities for copyright violations. Please review the forms and copyrights page for more information and to download the appropriate forms. It is best to provide original music, art, and images! (When obtaining permission, you are not just seeking to use permission for submission into the contest, but for all mediums that the film will be used in including online and broadcast).
The release form is one page, and includes release of intellectual rights, and image and voice rights. All applicable release forms need to be kept on file by the adult advisor. The Directing Change team will request release forms from the winning film teams and any other films that we anticipate may be used to support local awareness efforts, therefore it is important to keep all forms on file. If release forms cannot be provided upon request, the entry may be disqualified.
8. Upload your Entry Form by the deadline — midnight PST on Monday, March 1, 2021 – For every submission category EXCEPT non-60 second film submissions in the Hope & Justice category.
For the Hope & Justice category: 60-second films in the Hope & Justice category must be submitted by midnight on March 1, 2021 in order to be eligible to compete with all other statewide submissions in that category. However, any other non-60 second film submissions (poem, drawing, animation, Tik Tok, etc.) can be submitted by midnight on the last day of each month to be eligible for a prize. There is a separate Entry Form for the Hope & Justice category. You will be asked to upload your film file as part of the entry form. Films are automatically uploaded to the Directing Change Vimeo channel. Vimeo is our video services partner and all technical specifications need to be in line with their requirements. The entry can be saved for up to 30 days at a time.
- Try a different browser (e.g. if you are using Google Chrome, try Internet Explorer).
- Try uploading the film from a different computer (e.g. instead of your school’s computer, try your home computer).
- Try uploading the film using a different internet source: we receive many phone calls from students and teachers trying to upload the films while at school, but if your school’s internet blocks Vimeo.com, you will not be able to upload. Either try uploading the film at home/the library/another location, or use a personal hotspot or mobile wifi to upload.
- Visit the Entry Format page for information about submitting an entry in the Hope & Justice category.
- Contact us– we have never disqualified a film as a result of technical problems!
If technical problems persist, please contact us and include your internet browser and a description of the problem you are experiencing. Please be assured that we will not disqualify any entries that did make the deadline as a result of a technical problem with uploading the film or art file.
8. Sit back, relax, and think about what you will wear when you walk down the red carpet! Check out footage and pictures from past events here!