Women in Film and Television (WIFT) Australia has announced that applications are now open for the MentorHer 2020 program.
MentorHer is a three month program beginning in April. It facilitates mentorships between emerging, early career, or those looking to shift into a new area in the screen industry, and experienced practitioners. The initiative offers support and guidance to help further careers in all areas of the screen industry.
WIFT matches mentors (of any gender) and female-identifying mentees, from around Australia and encourages applications from diverse backgrounds and from all areas within the industry including games, distribution, cinematography and composition.
Mentors do not need to be a member of WIFT to participate, and provisions will be made for those working in remote locations, or for whom travel is difficult.
In the WIFT media release, Katrina Irawati Graham, QLD Board Member of WIFT Australia and facilitator of MentorHer says:
Mentoring is a powerful tool in the nurturing of cultural change and diversity including gender equity. It’s a positive effect on both the mentee and the mentor. MentorHer is about leading from where we are and helping the person behind you so she can have a smoother journey. We are looking for mentors who have a desire to share their experiences, communities, friendships, craft skills and knowledge. This is more important to us than what awards you have won.”
During MentorHer 2018 we matched 70 mentees across the nation with 70 fabulous mentors. Some of the success stories included craft outcomes like writing new drafts of work, a paid internship, understanding funding bodies better and widening a circle of friends with whom to navigate the industry.
Holly Lyons, script producer and screenwriter, who participated in MentorHer 2018 as a mentor was able to secure a sponsored place for her mentee Johanna Garvin on the ‘Writing for TV Intensive’ at AFTRS. Lyons says:
I am so grateful to WIFT for introducing me to my Mentee, Johanna Garvin. Jo and I formed a wonderful working relationship, and I was thrilled when Jo asked me to collaborate with her to apply for Screen Australia and ABC’s DisRupted initiative. We were even happier when we were awarded the funding, and was able to make Rocky & Me, with some other wonderful collaborators including Claire Tonkin from CJZ. This film was an enriching experience, the first time in my career writing a character with a disability. In total, we had eight people working on the project who live with a disability. I can’t wait to see what Jo and I collaborate on next.
Also quoted in the release, Briony Kidd, TAS Board Member of WIFT Australia, says:
In Tasmania, we have a lot of talented filmmakers, at all career stages, who are disadvantaged by their geographical location. While levels of production have certainly improved in the state in recent times, there are limited opportunities for them to develop the networks and resources necessary to succeed in this highly competitive field. So we are particularly keen to match mentors from right across the country with our mentees, to help to bridge that gap into the industry. With MentorHer a mentor has an opportunity to make a huge difference to a regional filmmaker’s career and we are very grateful to anyone who puts their hand up for this challenge.
More information about the program and how to apply to be a mentor or mentee can be found on the WIFT Australia website.
Applications for mentors and mentees are open now until 9 March 2020.