Tufts Announces Winners of Video Contest Recognizing Nonprofits and Aspiring Filmmakers

February 15, 2011

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MEDFORD/SOMERVILLE, Mass. – A Tufts University team today announced the winners of the 501c3: Capturing Change on Camera inaugural video competition, which promotes nonprofits that help children and families and filmmakers who tell their stories through visual testimonials. 

The contest was sponsored by the Child & Family WebGuide at Tufts, an expert-reviewed online resource with information for parents, professionals and students. Professor Fred Rothbaum, Tufts child development professor and co-creator of the WebGuide, supervised a team of three students who planned and executed all aspects of the project. The students, Tiffany Castillo, Kris Carter, and Kimberley Liao, were drawn from Tufts’ undergraduate program as well as Tufts’ graduate programs in Urban and Environmental Policy and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy—all of which are committed to civic engagement.

A heartfelt story on an end-of-life home for families in need, an inspiring testimonial of kids fostering critical thinking through the game of chess, and a video glimpse into the lives of vision-impaired teenagers learning basic living skills are all award recipients of the 501c3 contest.

"We designed this project to use the power of visual media to share the critical, under-recognized work of nonprofits and to serve as a resource for volunteers, supporters, and partnering organizations," said Carter.

Added Liao, "the response was overwhelmingly positive with fifty submissions from a broad range of organizations and regions all across the country. We even had international entrants from places as distant as Guatemala, India and Palestine."

501c3 judges included Belle Adler, associate professor of journalism at Northeastern University; Mindy Nierenberg, senior program manager at Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service, Tufts University; and Jill Lacey Griffin, director of programs at the Boston Foundation. These judges looked for inspiring, motivating and creative videos that showcased the hard work of youth, child and family- focused nonprofits. Castillo advocated for one additional award, “a staff choice” which was readily endorsed by the team.

A list of all the award winners follows:

First Place

"A New Way Home," by Ben Tuller for George Mark Children's Home, a pediatric end-of-life care facility in California (http://www.vimeo.com/16103023)

Second Place

"Chess Saved my Life," by Bao Nguyen for Chess-in-the- Schools, a New York City-based organization dedicated to improving academic performance and building self-esteem among inner-city public school children through chess (http://vimeo.com/17863681)

Under 18 Years of Age

"Independence in Sight," by Lauren Lindberg, Sydney Matterson, Bonita Tindle, and Julian Compagni-Portis for the Hatlen Center for the Blind in California, an organization that teaches vision-impaired individuals living skills to achieve independence (http://vimeo.com/17103949)

Honorable Mention

·         "The Family Center," by Nick Kaufman for The Family Center, a Somerville, Mass.-based organization that provides legal and social services to families experiencing parental illness or family crisis (http://vimeo.com/17810959)

·         "Operation Breaking Stereotypes," by Gwyn Welles for Operation Breaking Stereotypes, an exchange program for students in Boston, Maine and New York City that teaches cultural diversity (http://vimeo.com/18073552)

·         Staff selection: "That’s Not Me," by Bobby Moser for Colette’s Children’s Home, a residence for homeless women and children in Orange County, Calif. (http://vimeo.com/17745387.)

Carter explained that the team was "not only impressed by the creativity and cinematography showcased in the videos by the filmmakers, but also moved by the hard work and dedication that these nonprofits demonstrated."

The first place prize winner will receive $3,200, second place will receive $1,600, and the under 18 years of age prize will receive $600. These prizes will be split equally between the nonprofit organization and filmmaker.

The 501c3 Tufts University team intends to make this contest a reoccurring event and will be looking for new ways to help nonprofits and filmmakers gain more exposure. For more information about the project visit: http://www.cfw.tufts.edu/501c3/.

Tufts University, located on three Massachusetts campuses in Boston, Medford/Somerville, and Grafton, and in Talloires, France, is recognized among the premier research universities in the United States. Tufts enjoys a global reputation for academic excellence and for the preparation of students as leaders in a wide range of professions. A growing number of innovative teaching and research initiatives span all campuses, and collaboration among the faculty and students in the undergraduate, graduate and professional programs across the university is widely encouraged.

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