Mission

Illuminating, celebrating and advancing queer lives through film, education and dialogue.

We understand that change doesn’t happen overnight. Real change requires courageous leadership, strategic thinking and invested partners working together to foster a sense of belonging, affirmation and connection to other community members and to social movements.

We hope you’ll accept our invitation to be part of our bold vision forward.

Vision

We believe in a society where gender and sexual diversity are embraced and equitable inclusion for all queer community members is a reality.

Values

• Courageous and collaborative leadership
• Creativity and innovation
• Fun and celebration
• Respect and equitable inclusion
• Intersectionality, anti-oppression and social justice
• Sustainability

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Since its inception in 2004, Out in Schools has delivered hundreds of presentations, reaching more than 60,000 students throughout British Columbia!

Out in Schools works closely with school districts, educators, counsellors and students to present workshops which are suited to the individual needs of each particular school.

We collaborate with the Vancouver School Board and the BC Teachers Federation to deliver presentations throughout Vancouver and the Lower Mainland including Richmond, Delta, North Vancouver, West Vancouver, Surrey, Coquitlam, Port Moody and Maple Ridge.

In recent years, we have been expanding our reach to communities outside Metro Vancouver including Prince Rupert, Smithers, Haida Gwaii, Terrace, Vernon, 100 Mile House, Canim Lake, Williams Lake, Kamloops, Victoria, Nanaimo, Duncan, Parksville, Salt Spring Island, Nelson and Salmon Arm. Additionally, we now have a regional facilitator based on Vancouver Island.

We look forward to visiting your community!

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ILLUMINATING QUEER LIVES THROUGH FILM

For 27 years, Out On Screen has proudly showcased films that illuminate the transformative moments in the lives of queer people. Every time we take a seat at the Festival, we are experiencing the difference we are making: creating social change through film, education and dialogue.

With you, we are honoured to celebrate the unique, strong and splendid Vancouver queer communities that makes us who we are.

History

1988 – The first iteration of what we know today as the Vancouver Queer Film Festival was held as a small film festival among friends.

1989 – Out On Screen becomes an official non-profit society and the first Vancouver Gay & Lesbian Film Festival is launched!

1993 – Out On Screen receives its first form of government funding with a Casino License through BC Gaming.

1996 – Out On Screen is one of the first in the world to adopt the more inclusive “queer” title becoming the “Vancouver Queer Film & Video Festival” and in 2006, the “Vancouver Queer Film Festival.”

1998 – The Queer Video Production Scholarships are launched and 36 films are made over the next six years thanks to this video-training program!

2002 – The BC Film Classification Office (FCO) attempts to shut down the Festival’s Opening Gala film “Little Sister’s vs Big Brother” which chronicled the late Jim Deva’s battles with the government over censorship. Fortunately, Out On Screen’s dedicated membership rallied and thwarted this ironic censorship attempt and the show went on!

2004 – Out in Schools is launched as a pilot project with presentations in six high schools in Vancouver and Burnaby. Today, OiS reaches over 60,000 students in schools across BC and beyond!

2006 – REAL Women of Canada launches a smear campaign against the Festival, claiming that only “mad hatters” attend this “waste of taxpayers’ money.” Once again, the membership at Out On Screen rallies against hateful discrimination and the Festival lives on, louder and prouder than before!

2008 – Out On Screen celebrates 20 years in Vancouver and hosts a legendary and risque bathhouse party.

2011 – Celebrate Queer Vancouver engages 68 Canadian artists through film commissions and community art. Out On Screen celebrates by installing Celebrate Queer Vancouver plaques throughout the city to create a legacy of queer visibility.

2012 – Rise Against Homophobia (RAH) youth video contest goes national! Youth from across the country submit their anti-bullying films proving that “Hate is not a Canadian Value.”

2013 – Out On Screen celebrates 25 years of celebrating queer lives!

2014 – In a year of groundbreaking cinema, over 50% of the Festival’s feature programs are helmed by women. Not only that, these directors are Aboriginal, transgender, and women of colour – intersecting identities that are the least common in above-the-line credits.

Theory of change