Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question that is not listed here, please contact us.

How do you pick your films?

Randomly, by hat. Actually, that’s not true. Our jury spends hours watching and evaluating each film that’s submitted to the contest. They judge each piece on the following criteria:

  • Does the film present a unique and effective statement about mental illness and/or mental health?
  • Are the mental health issues presented in a way that feels honest and/or accurate?
  • Are the story and characters capable of involving the audience emotionally?
  • Are there any explicit or implicit calls-to-action that viewers could take after seeing this film?
  • Do the visuals – cinematography, art direction, overall aesthetic. – work together to support the story and message of the film?
  • Are the dialogue, music and other sound effects intelligible at all times and appropriate to the production?
  • Does the film stand well on its own in a way that will encourage viewers to share with friends and family?
  • Did you, personally, enjoy watching the film?
Who can submit a film to the short film contest?

Anyone, anywhere. There are no restrictions on who can submit films. That being said, to be considered, all the film submissions must:

  1. Address an issues related to mental health
  2. Have been created within the past 24 months
  3. Be 5 minutes or less
Do you have any tips for filmmakers?

Why yes, yes we do! Thank you for asking! And here they are.

  1. Appeal to people’s highest selves.
  2. Use humor to point out absurdity.
  3. Keep it simple, but absolutely honest.
Can anyone go to a campus event?

The vast majority of our college and university workshops are open to the public. You can check to make sure that’s the case by looking at the event listing on our website, under “Campus Events.”

What do the competition winners get?

The winner of each month’s short film contest gets to have her or his work featured in our campus events around Canada and the United States. We use the winning films to facilitate discussion and get people thinking about issues related to mental health, as well as how we can decrease stigma around mental illness. Our winners are basically super heros, changing the world through film. Oh, there’s also a $1,000 cash prize. NBD.

I can't find your Vimeo group.

Well, that’s not really a question, more of a statement. But we understand what you’re getting at. Here’s the direct link

I added my video to the Vimeo group but it's not showing up correctly on

Usually the solution to this is to make sure you’re using the direct URL for your film in our form, not the group URL. To fix this problem, look at the address you copied and pasted. If you see an address that looks like this: you’re looking at the video inside our group. You want an address that looks like this: You can just delete the /groups/126256/videos text, or navigate back to your video from the “Videos” menu at the top of the screen and copy/paste the URL from there.

Can I volunteer with Art With Impact?

How can we possibly say no to a question like that? There are always opportunities to get involved. Dude. We need as much help in other cities as we can get. Email us at info (at) artwithimpact (dot) org and we will get back to you to discuss how you can contribute to our mission of leveraging the arts to change minds about mental illness. You can also peruse opportunities here:

How do I bring a workshop to my campus / organization / workplace?

Hosts are colleges and universities, student groups, places of worship, nonprofit organizations, book/film clubs… anyone who believes in the power of film for social change. To sign up to host a workshop, simply contact Maya to start the conversation!

What if I disagree with something I see here?

Here’s the great thing about ideas. You can disagree with anyone, anytime. And we want to hear what you think. We do require, however, that if you participate in our programs that you be cordial and civil with all the members of our community. Exchanging ideas is awesome. Being hurtful or disrespectful is not.

What happens once I've signed up to host a workshop?

Once you’ve signed up you are ready to start planning your event. This involves three main components:

  1. Organize the logistics – Pick a date and time, then reserve your space. Organize the speakers to do Q&A following the screenings.
  2. Promote – We will send you paper posters and flyers, as well as digital files so you can send announcements to your fans and colleagues, public radio and campus radio stations, and invite your friends using our email templates.
  3. Enjoy! – Art With Impact events are pretty emotionally enriching. It’s an amazing feeling to be in a room with people who are all exploring ideas around mental health and ways they can cultivate balance and strength in their own lives. We look forward to making this event a success with you!
How come there isn't a winner every single month?

There are two possibilities for why a winner wouldn’t be announced in a given month. Either we didn’t get enough submissions (we need at least 12 each month), or the submissions we did get didn’t meet our standards for quality in both content and production value. If a winner wasn’t announced because we didn’t get enough entries, the submissions we did receive are automatically transferred to the next month for consideration and the filmmakers are notified that this has happened.