Youth video competition


Every spring we partner with the Kitchener Public Library (KPL) to offer young, budding filmmakers in our community, the chance to showcase their talents and win some extra spending money. We are also happy to announce that we will continue our partnership with The Grand River Film Festival.

Youth between the ages of 12 and 25 are invited to share their original short films and animations for a chance to win cash prizes in three age categories: 12-14, 15-17 and 18-25. Two $300 prizes are available in each category. Up to ten honourable mentions may also be chosen.

The submission deadline for 2020 is now closed. Thank you to all that submitted! 

We invite all that submitted, guests and film lovers, to the virtual premiere featuring all the winning films including honorouble mentions. The unveiling will take place on Thursday, November 5 at 7:30 p.m. (EST). Please see the Facebook 2020 Youth Video Competition Screening event, to access the premiere link.

You can subscribe to this page for news and updates on the 2021 submission process or contact Karoline Varin, Program Administrator, Arts & Creative Industries at The list of criteria below is a good start, if you are interested in participating in the contest next year.

Contest criteria

To be eligible for one of our top awards, your submission must meet the following criteria.

  • You can only submit one video entry per year.
  • You must be a Canadian resident; applicants from Waterloo Region will be given preference, however applications from other provinces may be considered
  • Your video must be between 45 seconds and three minutes in length (including credits).
  • Your video must be uploaded to YouTube or Vimeo in the highest quality possible. Either 1920 x 1080 (1080p) or 1280 x 720 (720p) are ideal.
  • Your video must be completely original, with no adult involvement. That means your video must be created, directed, filmed and edited by applicants between the ages of 12-25.
  • Content will be screened in a public setting and should be appropriate for an all-ages audience.
  • If you choose to use images, sounds or music in your video:
    • The content must be your own original work, or
    • You must have appropriate, documented permissions (I.e. ShareAlike licences) to use the content, or
    • The content must be in the public domain and follow all applicable copyright laws
    • Please reference the images, sounds or music used in your video, in the credits

If we suspect your video includes copy written media (audio/video/images) during the technical review, your submission may be disqualified. We strongly encourage you to include the sources of any media used in your video within the description area when you post the file to YouTube of Vimeo.

Tip: Watch a short video about the audio component of your video submission.

Tip: Want to locate legally appropriate media? Creative Commons provides access to millions of songs, images and music files that can be used. Be sure to read and follow the guidelines before including any work in your submission.

Submitting your video

2020 submission form

Selection process

Winners and honourable mentions are chosen based on how their submissions rank in our two review stages:

  • Technical review: Videos are initially reviewed for compliance with our contest criteria and the technical requirements for the competition. This includes length of video, format, visual projection qualities, and suitability for an all-ages audience.
  • Artistic review: Based on originality, quality and design values.

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