Since Telus Storyhive was launched, the project has engaged with more than 18,000 local content creators across B.C. and Alberta and provided more than $15 million in production funding. The program helps to foster ambitions, from content creation through to production and distribution.
“Each year we develop different kinds of programs that folks in Alberta and B.C. can apply for in support of video content in particular,” said Munira Mohamud, senior program manager of Storyhive Voices.
This year marked the second round, with close to 200 applications received and 100 creators receiving a $10,000 grant to produce a six-to-10 episode series. “We are looking to support underrepresented voices and unique stories that are coming out of urban centres and rural areas. It’s a great chance for those entering this creation space for the first time and gives them lots of exposure by being distributed on Optik TV.”
Storyhive.com has submission rules, along with tips on how to make a strong application. A pitch must be submitted explaining the creator’s story in 60 seconds or less.
“There are other parts of the application to go into more depth on how the story will be told, and why they are the best person to tell it. We love reading those tidbits about creators because we want to support authentic storytelling,” explained Mohamud.
Stories must be non-fiction and have local relevance by reflecting the community they are part of. Storyhive 2.0 “got a tremendous response,” stated Mohamud.
“We want to increase awareness that it exists as an opportunity for those who haven’t created content before. Let them know opportunities like this exist where funding is available along with support. These 100 creators will interact with one another, encouraging one another as they go through the program together.”
The program continues to expand and Mohamud hopes more creators are funded in the future. Storyhive can be found at storyhive.com or go to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook or TikTok to find out when the next round of applications will be accepted.
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SAMANTHA JOHNSON, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Medicine Hat News