Eva Wunderman films some of the students featured in Dialogues of Hope. The documentary will be shown at the Hope Cinema on Aug.

Local film promotes youth understanding

Dialogues of Hope explores issues relating to racism and hate

A new youth-driven documentary explores the issues faced by gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students in high school.

The short film emerged from the Hope Inclusion Project’s Challenge Day earlier this year, which strived to create understanding and empathy among its participants.

A community survey two years ago found that racism and hate is prevalent in high school. The Hope Inclusion Project decided to explore these issues further through a film project called Dialogues of Hope. Eight students from Hope Secondary were asked to come up with a focus for the film based on issues they see create the most tension.

“What’s great about this film from my perspective is that it’s a more positive, uplifting take on everything,” said project coordinator Darla Dickenson.

“It’s designed to create dialogue among youth, to help community leaders and community members connect with youth and understand youth better. It challenges people to look deeper into themselves.”

Dialogues of Hope explores the different perspectives through interviews with students, parents and teachers.

The 20-25 minute documentary is directed and produced by Eva Wunderman, with editing by Brodi-jo Scalise. Filming took place between March and June.

“We didn’t want to include anything that has no meaning,” said Wunderman.

“It’s been very interesting working with these kids. I liked opening it up to their interpretation and actually being a mentor.”

Dialogues of Hope will be shown at the Hope Cinema on Aug. 30 at 7:30 p.m. Admission is $2, with all proceeds benefiting the Hope Inclusion Project.

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