Students give the community a voice

community-voicesFlinders University Screen Production students have boosted the profile of ten community organizations in South Australia with a series of television commercials aimed at generating volunteer support.

The Community Voices program, in which students filmed, edited and produced commercials and short documentaries with $50,000 in support from the State Government, was launched by the Minister for Volunteers, Ms Grace Portolesi, last month.

Ms Portolesi said the Community Voices program put “the amazing achievements of community groups” under the spotlight and was “a rewarding, real life experience” for the students involved.

“The program is also a great opportunity to showcase to young people the value to the community of volunteering, and hopefully inspire them to become volunteers themselves,” Ms Portolesi said.

Lecturer in Screen Production at Flinders, Mr Cole Larsen, said “the Community Voices program aims to replicate a near commercial environment where students are required to interpret the needs of the community group and ensure these needs are met in terms of program content, design, and audience reach”.

“Students are exposed to ‘real life’ commercial production where the client needs rather than student aspirations drive the project. Students get experience in working to briefs, milestones and deadlines as well as the commercial specifications required to produce television commercials for network broadcast,” Mr Larsen said.

“Students have the opportunity for their work to be seen by audiences of more than 100,000 with the television commercials being screened in prime time television spots including commercial news, sporting events such as the Australian Open tennis and Test match cricket and evening programming,” he said.

The ten community groups supported in the 2010 program were: Community Food SA; Eldercare Inc; Fauna Rescue of SA Inc; Hackham West Community Centre; Holiday Explorers Inc; Iron Knob Progress Association Inc; Parkinson’s South Australia Inc; RPH Adelaide Inc; Sammy D Foundation Inc; Youth Opportunities Association SA Inc.

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