Community Screenings

This Community Screening Guide is to assist you in planning a community screening of The Oasis.

How to organise a community screening

Screening The Oasis and having a community discussion following it is a great way to encourage your local community to engage with youth homelessness and the surrounding issues.

Getting started

Define the goals and your audience for the screening – general awareness, is it an open screening? A fundraising screening for a local group? A screening to encourage dialogue and action between and amongst involved community groups? A school community screening?

If you intend screening to youths who are at risk or have addictions, we strongly encourage you to provide support during and after the screening.

Identify organisers

To ensure the success and maximise the outreach, you may want to put together a small group of people to organise the screening. Perhaps view the film together first to help pinpoint your community issues and the screening aims before allocating tasks.

  • Locate a venue
  • Locate your technical requirements – projection and sound
  • Get a copy of the film – see below.
  • Publicise your screening and/or invite your audience. Put up posters, send emails, write letters. Allow enough time between sending the invitation and the screening date. If it is important to have someone like the Mayor there, find out when they can attend before setting the screening date.
  • Assign a person to lead the discussion following and investigate discussion points for the community.

Audience

Suggested participants include:

  • Your Mayor, council members, local and federal politicians
  • Community Agencies and welfare groups
  • Community partners who offer services in your area – eg Lions Club, Rotary
  • Heads of schools – Principals, Guidance Counsellors, Student Councils
  • Local community media – radio, newspaper, television

There may be community organisations you can partner with who have some of the resources required to hold a screening – a hall or local cinema, projection equipment etc.

Venue

If you are not in a media space like a lecture theatre or cinema, try to provide some basics. Good projection, comfortable seating (the film is only 90 minutes so it is not too long to sit through) the ability to darken the space and a decent speaker set up for sound. Test your equipment before the screening starts. Many bodies in a space will soak up sound – you may need to lift the film volume when your audience are there.

You may choose to offer a refreshment area, ensure this does not pull people away from the discussion following.

Post Screening Discussion

Assign time following the screening for discussion. Allow 45 minutes for discussion about the film and about 90 minutes if you also want to discuss some actions that can be taken.

The discussion leader should set a respectful tone to open the discussion, it is likely that the film will have a strong emotional impact on many of the audience who may have found it quite confronting. It may be easier to begin if you allow people to respond to the film before starting to engage in how similar issues affect your community and what can de done to help. Remind the group that this is meant to be a dialogue rather than a debate, and ask that people focus on listening rather than simply preparing to make their own points.

Identify some actions for your audience that will allow them to engage more directly with the issues. Community partners may be able to provide suggestions for action steps. If you are able to, have some literature available for people to take with them if they are seeking help or want to provide help. (Get pamphlets from agencies, produce handouts with local phone numbers, print the “need help” page of this website.)

Your screening and discussion may have raised awareness in your community about many issues. There may be many people who want to become involved in some way. Pass a form around to collect peoples' contact details so you can keep contact and meet again to start implementing some of the actions people discussed.

You can download the ATOM Study Guide from this website and use the material in it to spark discussion points for your screening. You can also download the Summary of the NYC report and read through the recommendations. Encourage your community to implement some of them locally.

Follow Up

Follow up with any attendees who asked for information about how to organise their own screening.

Thank key community members for coming, ask what they thought of the film and event, and find out if they have any ideas about next steps to take with the film or youth issues in your community. Point them towards the NYC report and the recommendations in it – are local government able to implement any?

Complete any action steps you are responsible for, such as mailing letters, contacting schools or agencies or following up with media.

Contact us and let us know how your screening went!

Getting a copy of The Oasis

Send us your proposal for your screening. When approved we will send you a DVD copy of the film to screen. Following your screening, donate the DVD to your local library, and ensure that community groups know it is there for any future screenings.

If you are organising a large screening in a cinema, contact us for other digital format details (we do not have 35mm versions of the film).

Visit www.theoasismovie.com.au to view where community screenings are being held around Australia.