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Latino Project

Latino youth from thirteen Oregon communities speak out about the future in these two half-hour video programs designed to facilitate positive cross-cultural dialogue among English and Spanish-speaking audiences. Written and produced by Latino teens working in collaboration with professional filmmaker mentors, the programs emphasize the importance of family and peer relationships and reflect with pride on the cultural traditions, past and present, which are shaping this next generation of Hispanic Americans.

The Oregon Latino Youth Video Project is a partnership project of the Northwest Film Center and Oregon Council for Hispanic Advancement. The purpose of the Project is to support the personal, educational, and pre-professional growth of disadvantaged Hispanic youth around the state by empowering them to have an active media voice in the community through the production and dissemination of video work created by their own hand.

Over a three year period, professional filmmaker mentors from the Northwest Film Center's Filmmakers-in-the-Schools Outreach Program taught scriptwriting, on-camera performance, videography, editing, and group decision-making skills to small groups of youth participating in the Oregon Council for Hispanic Advancement's Oregon Leadership Institute.

Working long and often exhausting hours after school, during holiday breaks, and on weekends, the youth drew upon documentary, experimental, and dramatic filmmaking techniques to write, direct, shoot, appear in, and edit a series of short video programs, many of them featuring family members and peers, and each with poignant commentary about the tensions and opportunities of growing up in two cultures. At completion, they premiered their work with great pride to local audiences in their home towns of Portland, Bend, and Ontario.

The video programs, grouped into two compilations of approximately 30 minutes each, now move into the larger public dialogue as media resources suitable for integration into community education programs, the secondary school curriculum, teacher education programs, peer outreach projects, and other cultural awareness efforts.

May their vision seed a future of cultural respect and understanding and inspire the lesser-heard voices of others to come.

For information about ordering videos, please contact the NW Film Center at 503-221-1156.

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