Sheffield Doc Fest – January Update


Four young care leavers have been working hard cultivating their documentaries during lockdown. These care leavers bring creativity and uniqueness to their films portraying their stories of the care system. To help the new filmmakers cultivate their upcoming films, the lovely team at Sheffield Documentary Festival have been holding workshops to give the new filmmakers some new and improved film making skills. Over the Christmas break, all filmmakers received some filming equipment to help make their films stand out among the professionals. Some of our filmmakers have described this as a “cool that they have unlocked skills they did not know they had”. While hours spent on TikTok and other video editing platforms have served to some advantage, Zoe Parker, from MMU and the documentary festival team, have been showing the team how to make the most of your phone camera and free video editing software.

Shaunna’s film depicts her story of the foster care system in the North West of England. Her motivation to cultivate her story started by hearing from many care leavers wanting their voices to be heard. Shaunna has been working her way around the tripods, microphones and light rings, only to be in the midst of developing a thought-provoking piece. Another young filmmaker, Tassie, tells the story of how care leavers are left without support in the judicial system. Tassie leaves you thinking about what the future holds in protecting young care leavers in the prison system. Adrian, a young care leaver from Sheffield, is creating a film based on his passion, the industry development of animation and how the industry has survived through the COVID-19 crises. Lastly, Chidi, an inspiring filmmaker, hopes to tell the stories of the care experienced through care leavers eyes. Chidi, the only non-care leaver of the group, has found telling the powerful stories from young care leavers ‘in their eyes’ to be challenging but a moving experience, stating “they have been welcomed into a new world”.

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