The Ashland Independent Film Festival (AIFF) is the recipient of an $18,000 grant from the Fred W. Fields Fund of The Oregon Community Foundation to expand the AIFF’s annual regional student competition, which encourages storytelling through film, and the family program, which screens short, family films. The mission of the Ashland Independent Film Festival is to celebrate the diversity of the human experience through the art of independent film – inspiring, enriching and educating audiences of all ages.
The funds will enable the AIFF to increase year-round outreach to youth in Southern Oregon and Northern California to encourage their participation in the Launch, a free contest for kindergarten through undergraduate students. All entrants receive ticket vouchers to attend festival films, and winners in each of four categories will for the first time receive a prize valued at $500. The deadline for film submission is January 18, 2013. Complete information is available at ashlandfilm.org.
In addition, OCF funds will support additional screenings of the AIFF’s popular Family Shorts program during the festival. Geared to ages 5+, the Family Shorts program presents a collection of eight to ten short independent films. Last year’s program included the Oscar® winning animated short film “The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore,” which received the AIFF’s Family Choice Award.
“The Family Program and the Launch student filmmaker competition support the AIFF’s promise to inspire and educate through the presentation of independent film, as well as nurture a new generation of filmmakers and film lovers,” said AIFF Executive Director Anne Ashbey Pierotti. “We are deeply grateful to the OCF for supporting our vision so that we can introduce more of our youngest audience members to the artform, whether it serves to jumpstart a career in film or new appreciation for this form of storytelling.”
The mission of The Oregon Community Foundation is to improve life in Oregon and promote effective philanthropy. OCF works with individuals, families, businesses and organizations to create charitable funds to support the community causes they care about. Through these funds OCF awards more than $80 million annually in grants and scholarships. “The Oregon Community Foundation is pleased to be able to help the Ashland Independent Film Festival engage more children and families,” said OCF Program Officer Amy Cuddy. “This grant is among the first from the Fred W. Fields Fund, which supports exemplary arts and education programs throughout Oregon, and is a recognition of AIFF’s history of good work.”
About the Oregon Community Foundation: The Oregon Community Foundation makes grants through an application process that involves local citizens in the review and evaluation of requests for funds. Application deadlines are February 1 and August 1. The Foundation also awards college scholarships. Individuals or businesses interested in establishing a fund may contact the Medford office at 818 W Eighth Street, Medford OR 97501, (541) 773-8987. For more information, visit www.oregoncf.org.