Action for Hope Film School was launched in March 2017, building on the video training workshops that were organized by Action for Hope in Lebanon since 2013, within the cultural relief convoys and also as standalone activities. The school is situated in the Action for Hope Cultural Center in Ghazzeh, Beqaa, Lebanon, and is fully equipped with 3 film shooting units, 2 editing units, a sound mixing suite, and a large hall that can be used for shooting, screenings and for group lectures.
Action for hope Film School aims to provide young men and women living in refugee and marginalized communities in Lebanon with the creative skills and tools needed to communicate, document their stories, and to express themselves freely and creatively, as well as to enable them to work professionally in film-making and in the media. The school also aims at enriching cultural life in Lebanon with new artistic work made by young artists who come from refugee and marginalized communities.
To achieve these general goals, Action for Hope Film School accepts 20 new students each year and helps them to enter the world of filmmaking by providing them with the skills and knowledge they need to be able to produce their own films. The school also provides 10 – 15 graduates each year with the skills and knowledge they need to work professionally in TV or film and/or pursue university study in film-making, it supports the production of 3-4 film projects by these graduates each year, and promotes their films in festivals and events in Lebanon and internationally.
Curriculum and Study Phases:
The students are selected upon an open application process, followed by an assessment workshop. They are within the age group 16 to 24 years and mostly come from Syrian refugee communities in Beqaa, but also include Lebanese and Palestinian students.
Action for Hope Film School follows a 9-month regular study program that includes over 350 hours of teaching and exercises, concluding with a graduation film project. The study curriculum was developed by Mostafa Youssef, the artistic supervisor of the film school and it includes the following topics: cinematography/videography, moving image and animation, script-writing and directing, sound design, film and narrative structure, and editing and special effects. In addition, students attend film screenings and other cultural events as part of their education. The teaching is delivered by qualified trainers in filmmaking from Lebanon as well as visiting teachers from other countries.
After completing the course, the graduates are supported to enroll into a one-year professional development phase which provides financial and technical support for their first semi-professional film projects. Action for Hope promotes the films made by students and graduates in local, regional and international film festivals and events.
Results in March 2019
- 32 young people graduated from the film school and produced 12 graduation projects
- 2 films were selected for screening by two festivals in Lebanon
- 1 film was given a special mention by the jury of the Arab Short Film Festival
- 3 films were produced by the graduates with support from Action for Hope
- 2 of the graduates received a full scholarship from Saint Joseph University in Beirut for a degree in audio visual studies.
- 7 graduates started working as freelance videographers, photographers, assistant directors and directors.