Fiona Hyslop MSP Hosts Scottish Youth Film Foundation in Parliament

Fiona Hyslop MSP for the Linlithgow Constituency has hosted a reception in Parliament marking the story and journey of the Scottish Youth Film Foundation (SYFF).

SYFF are a dynamic young charity bringing new project-based learning to traditional education in an effort to close attainment gaps and strengthen the growing Scottish film industry.

Their mission is to improve the lives of young people through film and they do this in three ways: through an annual Festival, their 8th annual Scottish Youth Film Festival took place at The Bridge in Dumfries on the 22nd and 23rd October 2022; through film education in schools; and through outreach film projects that target young people who would not normally have an opportunity to make a film.

Fiona attended their inaugural Film Festival Awards Ceremony in Armadale, in her Constituency, in 2015 and has been an active supporter of their work ever since including supporting them in ensuring the success of their wide ranging COP TV and COP26 Film Awards Ceremony in 2021.

Fiona commented,

“As the local MSP for the area where the Scottish Youth Film Foundation began, I couldn’t be more proud or more pleased to see how the Foundation has grown, particularly though some challenging times.

“The films and programmes which SYFF have produced and exhibited at their Awards shows including their Life in Lockdown project and COP TV project, show a real sense of young people who are eager to question things, who are demanding answers and empowering others to do likewise. That collective movement, that sense of urgency to create, is what film and the arts is all about. And that is pretty powerful.

“The hands-on experience, education and outreach offered through SYFF, builds confidence, prepares young people for working life and introduces them to different ways of working. These skills are invaluable to our personal and professional growth and I want to recognise the Co-Founders, Scott MacKay and David Barras, for having the vision and belief to set it up.”

The Scottish Youth Film Festival has also been announced as one of the very first Awardees of the Sean Connery Foundation.

The Foundation’s Co-Founders David Barras and Scott Mackay added,

“We couldn’t be more delighted to be among the first grantees of the Sean Connery Foundation. Sean Connery personifies Scotland’s film industry, and his lifelong championing of literacy is one that SYFF shares. This grant will allow us to expand our reach and our ability to help young Scots realise or raise their ambitions using modern project-based learning. The skills learned can be life-changing for many of the young people we encounter.”