By R.Eguia

The Can’t Beat Love San Antonio Youth Film Contest is an annual film competition designed for high school students to explore difficult issues that teenagers may face. The topic for  this year is Prejudice. The deadline for submissions closed last month and the winners will be announced at the screening on February 26 at the Santikos Silverado Theater located at Bandera Rd. and 1604.   Doors open at 6:00 PM and screenings begin at 7:00 PM.

Filmmakers were challenged to explore the topic of prejudice in any one of several ways: how they recognize prejudice and how they have witnessed it, the impact it has on their lives, families and the wider community, and possible solutions for helping to curb the undercurrent of any prejudice that may exist in their school or community.

As in year’s past, filmmakers submit a short film (less than 5 min in length) or a public service announcement (less than 60 seconds in length). Previous topics included human trafficking, cyber bullying, and teen dating violence.

Alamo Heights High School Film Teacher, John Munoz said, “The Can’t beat love video contest allows me as a teacher to not only give my students a project they can complete in class, but it also creates an environment amongst my classroom that is extremely cooperative. From the unveiling of the topic to the huge spectacular awards ceremony, my kids are working together and not only creating cool videos, but they are educating themselves about a serious topic society faces. I can’t say enough great things about this contest, I will always assign it to my students as long as they continue to offer such a great event.”

Can’t Beat Love is pleased to offer several of the winning films as tools for teachers, school counselors and community to help spur discussion among teens. Over the past seven years, Can’t Beat Love has challenged high school students to address bullying, substance abuse and addiction, peer pressure, etc., and, while all the films are remarkable, there are many that stand out for their artistry, messaging, vision, and talent. Educators and counselors are encouraged to view the short films and then consider some of the associated discussion questions and resource lists to further explore the various messages and themes in their classrooms.

Winning films from previous Can’t Beat Love film contests are being used by Family Violence Prevention Services, Bexar County Probation Department, church/synagogue groups, as well as a variety of youth groups and schools.

In 1977, Ann Whitehead, a local social worker, realized the pervasiveness of family violence in San Antonio.  She envisioned an environment where victims of abuse could find respite from fear.  She enlisted the help of Reverend Don Baugh, Director of the San Antonio Community of Churches, and together with faith, determination and $400.00 opened the Battered Women and Children’s Shelter (BWCS) of Bexar County on March 9, 1977.

In May 2002, the Battered Women & Children’s Shelter (BWCS) moved into La Paloma De La Paz, a shelter complex that accommodates 220 people.   La Paloma De La Paz is located in a complex with a variety of residential and supportive services. These together provide a cost-efficient synergy of services, and expand options and choices for clients.  BWCS has grown extensively over the last 42 years, what was once a three bedroom facility offering only emergency shelter today has a 60,000 sq. ft.  emergency residential facility, a 15,000 sq. ft. non-residential facility, Court & Military Liaison Program at the Bexar County Civil District Courts, Community Based Counseling Program at Haven for Hope and the first accredited Batterer Intervention Program in San Antonio. With a professional team of licensed counselors, case managers and attorneys, BWCS provides their residential and non-residential clients supportive and life-saving programs that together give options and choices for families

Today, FVPS is able to offer residential and non-residential clients shelter, transitional housing, counseling for adults, children, families, and legal services. These services help individuals and families recover from the pain and long-term effects of domestic violence.

Programs & Admin -210-930-3669

CRISIS HOTLINE- 210-733-8810

National Domestic Violence Hotline – 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)

Family Violence Prevention Services

7911 Broadway

San Antonio, TX 78209