Movies and culture

Youth making movies, exploring national identity in Oceanside program

From left

From left

Some are attending sports camps, others are at home or hanging out with friends, but a handful of youth were out in Qualicum Beach last week, learning about our culture, how to gather and disseminate information and the art of movie making. 

The program was being put on by the Family Resource Association (FRA) in Qualicum Beach, where a team of professionals offer a variety of free programs to youth in the area, as well as other services like early intervention, counselling, support and educational services.

The summer programs, which included Build Your Own Longboard and Youth Art Night, were created after receiving about 150 surveys back from students in local middle and high school’s about what they wanted to do this summer, and what their barriers were to accessing those types of programs.

Movie Making was a four-day program that had youth brainstorming what culture is, specifically Canadian Culture, and then going out into the community and interviewing others on their ideas of culture. They also analyzed a news broadcast and then re-evaluated their initial ideas about Canadian culture. 

“Basically our goal was to encourage people to think for themselves,” said Jordan Gail, behavior management councillor at FRA.  

“I think the most important skill (they will learn in the program) is not necessarily making movies or working together as a group, I think the most important skill is learning that we can find our own knowledge,” he said.

Student Atlin Farinha said he particularly liked the interviewing process which pushed him outside of his comfort zone.

“It got my adrenaline up because I’m usually not that open,” he said. 

Although he wants to be a movie star “super bad,” the experience made him consider he could also perhaps make movies as well as star in them, he said.

Krystalynn Savard agreed the interviews were really fun, but she was also looking forward to making the movie, as she often makes movies at home with her friends.

 With the information they gleaned, the youth made a script and filmed a mock news cast, an exaggeration of what they found today’s culture to look like, called Justin Beaver is Dead (misspelling intentional).

Gail said the finished product is something the kids can keep or do what they want with, but it’s also a chance for others to reflect on our culture.

“It gives people watching an opportunity to reflect on our culture and how our culture isn’t about maple syrup and Tim Hortons but our culture is actually being played out day to day,” he said.

For more information on the Family Resource Association and their programs visit or call 250-752-6766.


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