Important announcements about our programs

May 20, 2020

We know that many in LGBT2Q+ communities are feeling more isolated during the current quarantine. With the uncertainty of how COVID-19 will affect our ability to gather moving forward, Out On Screen has been very busy planning opportunities for people to connect now and into the future. Below are important announcements about how our programs have changed in response to the needs of the communities we serve.

The Vancouver Queer Film Festival

Out On Screen is here for you. You are not alone. Queer film is more important now than ever, which is why the VQFF and Out In Schools have expanded to support you through art, visibility, and connection.

Queer people are resilient; we grow, thrive and bring beauty to the world even in the harshest times. The VQFF is on this August, and will feature films and interdisciplinary programming from queer filmmakers and artists whose work shows the many ways we fight for the fullness of our lives, for what and who we love, and for our shared futures. Our theme this year is Still Here, because our survival is an inevitable miracle. Nothing can stop us from taking root; we will always reach for the light and sky.

We are working to ensure this year’s Festival will be as accessible as possible, as you have come to expect from Out On Screen, and remains safe for those in our community who are immunocompromised or part of another vulnerable sector. This is why the VQFF has adapted to continue to bring LGBT2Q+ communities together: 

  • VQFF goes digital: We can’t predict the future, but we can plan for you to not miss a single moment of the 2020 Vancouver Queer Film Festival. We are proud to announce that the 32nd VQFF will be fully digital from August 13th-23rd. The online Festival will feature all the films, workshops, artist Q&As, panels, parties and – most importantly – the feeling of gathering with friends and kin that you’ve come to expect from your favourite queer film festival.
  • Online watch parties: The VQFF is also creating new opportunities for folks to stay connected through art with biweekly watch parties. We are convening together, while in our homes, around the queer films that brought us together at previous Festivals. These viewings are made possible through Netflix, and the Netflix Party Chrome extension which includes an online chat function. The experience is enhanced with the opportunity to hear directly from Anoushka Ratnarajah, our Artistic Director, through post-film Q&As on Instagram.

Out In Schools

Today, queer youth are isolated from their schools and peer groups, which makes some far more vulnerable and in need of connection. As Out In Schools always strives to meet young people where they are, it only makes sense for us to make every effort to meet youth and educators online during this time.

Out In Schools has expanded our program offerings for educators to include:

  • Online educator and youth webinars
  • Pre-presentation activities, lesson plans, and our online video library for educators
  • Programming specific to youth in GSA/SOGI clubs

Serving youth in BC remains our priority, but our new offerings have opened digital doors, making it possible for us to now reach beyond BC, supporting even more teachers and students than before. Wherever you are, we can be there.

We also know that it’s a tough time for everyone, even schools. This is why Out In Schools will continue to offer its sliding scale fee structure so no youth, classroom, or school is denied our lifesaving program based on a lack of financial privilege.

Community Update

You are invited to join us to hear more about these changes in our live Community Update next week. We are doing a Zoom webinar on Thursday, May 21st from 6:30-7pm to provide more details to you, our audiences, and partners about our plans for this year’s VQFF and Out In Schools. Please register so we know to expect you!

Afterwards, you are invited to our watch party that evening at 7:30pm. We’ll be watching Tell It To The Bees, which we first screened at last year’s Festival. 

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