Empowering Youth Through Film: Young Filmmakers Lab (YFL/24)

April 17th, 2024    |   Related To: Republic Bank Limited

The Filmmakers Collaborative of Trinidad and Tobago (FILMCO) is proud to announce its partnership for the second consecutive year with valued sponsors and community partners to host the Young Filmmakers Lab (YFL/24). YFL/24 is an educational and life skills initiative designed to provide a solid foundation for youth, ages 16-21 to professionally utilise film for storytelling. It also acts as a bridge between being creative and having a career in the television and film industry.


This year, we are thrilled to welcome participants nominated by SERVOL, the Heroes Foundation, the St. James Policy Youth Club and Tobago Library Services. In 2024, thirty (30) new participants will benefit from the YFL programme, a thirty percent (30%) increase over 2023.

YFL/24 spans 12 weeks and is tailored for youth connected to approved youth organisations. By fostering teamwork and blending filmmaking knowledge with practical application, the programme equips participants with the necessary skills and knowledge to pursue apprenticeship roles within the television and film industry.

Participants are guided by industry practitioners through all aspects of film development, production, and post-production processes. Key topics covered include Crew and Production Stages, Production Teams & Development, Documentary Interviews, Camera, Lights & Sound, Demo of External Shooting, Releases, Planning a Shoot, Shooting a Documentary/Narrative, and Editing.

The programme commenced on February 24, 2024, with an orientation session hosted at the UWI-Film Programme, a proud partner of YFL/24. Tuition and practical workshops will continue from March 2, 2024, to mid-May, culminating in a graduation ceremony on June 15, 2024.

The film industry offers a plethora of creative and employment opportunities for individuals from all walks of life. Ms. Denise Deonarine, General Manager of the Filmmakers Collaborative, shared “FILMCO’s YFL/24, not only imparts valuable filmmaking skills but also instils confidence, creativity, and a sense of purpose among our participants. Through this programme, FILMCO and its partners are shaping the next generation of storytellers, empowering them to realise their potential and make meaningful contributions to the world of television and film. This year, the FILMCO YFL/24 is happy to welcome a focused group of participants from diverse areas. Represented regions include Cedros, Point Fortin, Morvant, Mayaro, Piarco, Barataria, Arima, Petit Valley, and Tobago. We worked closely with Backyard Designs and Nicholas Huggins, to create our official YFL logo and YFL/24 t-shirt, which was provided to each participant. We are ever thankful to our sponsors and programme partners for making this programme possible. We hope YFL/24 will foster lasting friendships and help our dear participants to use film to tell their stories while inspiring others.”


The programme is made possible by leading sponsor the JB Fernandes Memorial Trust I, and supporting sponsors, the United States Embassy (Port of Spain), Republic Bank Limited – Power to Make a Difference Programme and Angostura Limited. We also thank our programme partners, The UWI Film Programme, TT Ride Share, the Kiss Baking Company Limited and Holiday Snacks Limited.

Young Filmmakers Lab FILMCO YFL 2024 - Orientation (48 of 49) photo

Speaking on behalf of the JB Fernandes Memorial Trust 1 (YFL’s leading sponsor) Ms. Le Anne Alexander – Philanthropic Advisor, pictured with Denise Deonarine, General Manager of FILMCO, noted, “YFL/24 was an intentionally built program for young aspiring filmmakers to understand the many facets of a career in film and entertainment. Exposing young people who participate in the Young Filmmakers Lab to this calibre of professionals, who not only serve as mentors, but also share their expertise, provides them with unique insight and learning experiences that help them make informed decisions about the careers they pursue. While the creative industry continues to be a lucrative and prosperous space for some, there is still a lack of representation with many of its roles. What Filmco provides is not just an opportunity to learn new skills, but instead affords youth social capital, access to highly skilled and professional creative networks and safe and meaningful opportunities to express themselves, via a national platform, while learning the power of storytelling.”

Empowering Youth Through Film: Young Filmmakers Lab (YFL/24) Orientation Eli US Embassy-Enhanced photo

Speaking on Behalf of the U.S. Embassy, Assistant Public Affairs Officer Eli Levine, pictured above noted, “In this transformative endeavour, FILMCO continues to provide a nurturing environment in which students wield the power of television and film to inspire change, spark conversation, and amplify diverse voices from all walks of life. When we provide opportunities for young people to develop critical work skills and be creative through programs like the Young Filmmakers Lab, we are investing in the future of this nation.”

Empowering Youth Through Film: Young Filmmakers Lab (YFL/24) Attendees from SERVOL NL196_f1

Mr. Lawrence Arjoon, CEO of The Heroes Foundation, pictured above comments: “YFL is ushering in a new era of filmmaking, where the voices, vision, and stories of Caribbean youth are being empowered to change the world. We at the Heroes Foundation are excited by the impact we see this programme having on the young people enrolled. It goes beyond just the start of their journey as students of film as it gives them a chance to experiment, explore, fail, learn from that failure, grow, and to ask for help. We look forward to seeing these young people find confidence in themselves, further develop their voice, and use that voice to tell stories that resonate across the globe.”

Empowering Youth Through Film: Young Filmmakers Lab (YFL/24) Attendees from SERVOL

Mr. Renwick Daniel of SERVOL shared: “Empowering at-risk youth with practical skills brings enthusiasm to learners. This is what the Filmmakers Collaborative of Trinidad and Tobago brings to our students, and we at SERVOL are proud to be part of the second cohort of this Filmco project.”

Learn more here: https://filmco.org/young-filmmakers-lab

Young Filmmakers Lab (YFL:24) sponsors