December 3, 2019 at 11:41 am PST | by John Paul King
LA’s Outfest launches ‘every1matters’ fundraising campaign

Outfest Executive Director Damien S. Navarro (R) with former Executive Director Christopher Racster, who departed the post this summer. (photo courtesy of Outfest).

On Giving Tuesday, Outfest, the Los Angeles film festival established in 1982 by a group of UCLA students, launched the new “#every1matters” campaign to help fund programs “for the next 40 years,” according to Executive Director Damien S. Navarro.

Announcing the campaign in a press statement, the LGBTQ film festival wrote:

“Outfest is the only LGBTQIA+ arts, media and entertainment non-profit organization on earth whose programs empower storytellers to transform the world while also supporting the entire lifecycle of their career.

“Outfest programs give artists, filmmakers and entertainment professionals the opportunity to discover their voice, provide the pathways to the visibility of their work, and assure that their legacy will live on for generations to come. Our tentpole film festivals, summits, OutSet young filmmaker project, screenwriting labs, trans-acting workshops, and film archive and restoration program in partnership with UCLA, are collectively some of the most widely recognized on the planet.”

In 2017, the festival began developing what they call “a bold new Strategic Plan” as a response to “increasing calls for inclusion from within the Entertainment Industry, our Nation’s growing disparity across the socio-economic-political landscape, and declining acceptance of the LGBTQIA+ community for the first time in history (GLAAD 2019 Acceptance Report).”

Navarro, who took over as Outfest’s Executive Director this year, says the organization has “developed a blueprint […] that I believe will re-define our next 40 years,” going on to cite plans for a new “Outfest Campus,” an expansion of their current Outfest Forward professional development programs that he says will “create greater OPPORTUNITY for LGBTQIA+ filmmakers and storytellers.”

“Outfest plans to create greater with the creation of OUTFEST CAMPUS, a major expansion of our OUTFEST FORWARD professional development programs.”

As one of first major fundraisers, the festival has launched the Outfest #every1matters Campaign on Giving Tuesday, December 3rd, 2019.   The premise: “Donate just $1, no more no less, then take a minute to share a story about a movie, event, or organization that’s had a transformational change on their life – this can take the form of a quick video, post, or letter that is shared on social media starting at 12:01 am Tuesday morning.”

Navarro adds the instruction, “Make sure to tag @Outfest, #every1matters, #givingtuesday and encourage everyone to simply give $1 to Outfest at Proceeds from the #every1matters campaign will ensure that Outfest programs will continue for the next 40 years.”

Select stories from the campaign will be featured in a special film showcase at Outfest’s 2020 Spring Fusion People of Color and Summer Los Angeles Film Festivals, as well as across their streaming platforms.


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