Tag Archives: Films about social issues

West Van director raises autism awareness with ‘When Time Got Louder’

By Mina Kerr-Lazenby, North Shore News, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

It can be a double edged sword, inclusivity in film. The two steps forward taken by the industry when representing otherwise marginalized or excluded communities are often followed by a step back when that community isn’t represented as accurately as it could be.

It is the driving force behind much of Connie Cocchia’s work. The LGBTQ+ writer and producer, originally from West Vancouver, has made creating accurate representation in film her raison d’être. Now, for her directorial debut, she’ll be releasing a film that has a character with autism at its centre – but not in a way that you’ll likely have seen before.

Unlike films like Rain Man and Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, which depict those with autism spectrum disorder as savants or hyper-logical detective types, Cocchia’s character bears a relationship to neurodiverse people who live regular lives.

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Filming Dillon Creek, more than just a wetland restoration

Lives changed because of the Dillon Creek Wetland Restoration.

Project manager Miranda Cross said, “ This project really initiated a whole new life path where I am now working as a wetland restoration professional.” 

Monitoring Technician Autumn Barret Morgan studied soundscapes before she came to Cortes Island, but it was at Dillon Creek that she “started really diving into the soundscape” – which she has carried on with the Western Screech Owl Monitoring Project.

Beatrix Baxter has been making films for about 15 years, but she was feeling burned out by the time she moved to Cortes Island. The documentary film Replenish: Bringing Back the Dillon Creek Wetland is both a chronicle of the project, and part of a personal transformation.

“I’m pretty choosy about the projects I take on these days. I just really want to choose projects that are going to be quite meaningful to me and to the world,” she explained. 

Continue reading Filming Dillon Creek, more than just a wetland restoration

How the Cortes Community Island Foundation hit the ground running

Cortes Island’s little community foundation has turned to be a leader in terms of innovation. 

“Most community foundations have years and years of fundraising and millions of dollars of endowments behind them. They get to have their cake and eat it too,” explained Executive Director Manda Aufochs Gillespie.

“This idea that we’ve got – to just hit the ground running and figure out what the social profits on Cortes need and trying to help become a partner and getting that for them – turns out that’s really innovative in the community foundation world. It’s only the most up to date modern community foundations that are trying to figure that out.”

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Open House for Rainbow Ridge

Despite the heavy snowfall Wednesday, at least 100 people are believed to have attended the open house for Rainbow Ridge affordable housing development in Mansons Hall. 

 “We were really happy with the turnout considering the weather, the snow and the road conditions. We decided to go ahead with the event regardless because we had special guests including Ian Scott, who was coming all the way from Victoria. He’s our development consultant and he was in Campbell River for other meetings. He made it to Cortes through the snow. The island roads were plowed and salted to help people, including me, get all the way from Squirrel Cove as well as the Klahoose drummers who made it to the event to help open up the presentation,” said Sandra Wood, Executive Director of the Cortes Community Housing Society.

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Cortes Housing Society Film: ‘Behind the Design’

The Cortes Community Housing Society has just released a film about the design work they have completed, with the help of Iredale Architecture, on the Rainbow Ridge project.

“ We’re very lucky to have Bill Weaver, the film maker on our board of directors. Bill is actually our vice president and one of the things he’s so gifted at  is capturing film and photos. One of the things he’s been trying to do since the beginning of the project is really record the process that the housing society has gone through,” said Sandra Wood, Executive Director of the Housing Society.

Continue reading Cortes Housing Society Film: ‘Behind the Design’