Press Release from Sea to Sea Productions

HOPE FOR THE FUTURE in contention for the $50,000 Shaw Rocket Prize with the winner decided by a 700-member National Student Jury

Halifax – February 12, 2007 – The Halifax produced documentary Hope for the Future has been recognized as one of this year’s best Canadian television programs targeted for family and youth. The Shaw Rocket Fund announced the top four finalists in contention for the 2007 Shaw Rocket Prize at the 8th Annual KidScreen Summit held in New York City on February 9, 2007.

Hope for the Future was produced and directed by Teresa MacInnes and Kent Nason of Sea to Sea Productions, a husband and wife filmmaking team living in St. Margaret’s Bay, Nova Scotia. It was produced in association with CTV Television, Rogers Documentary Fund, Students for Teaching Peace, and Peaceful Schools International.

Hope for the Future is an emotional documentary that records what is often the most memorable event in a student’s life, an incredible journey to a foreign land. The inspiration for the trip came from an Atlantic Film Festival screening of Teaching Peace in a Time of War, a film directed by MacInnes, that documents the efforts of Hetty van Gurp as she encourages teachers and students to seek peaceful ways of dealing with conflict in schools affected by war in Serbia. Accompanied by van Gurp and their teachers, Jana Bayer Smith (Eastern Shore District High) and Greg Albers (St. Pat’s High), thirty-two students made the ten-day trek to the Balkans to attend a peace conference, bringing hope and friendship to the children of Serbia. They proclaimed themselves “Students for Teaching Peace.”

he students who traveled were film and video students and they had a keen desire to record their trip. Filmmakers Kent Nason and Teresa MacInnes were so impressed with the passion and sincerity of the young people that they decided to film the adventure and helped the group secure resources from the National Film Board of Canada. With the help of the CBC, the students produced a seven-minute video after they returned. That left over 100 hours of film material and a powerful story that filmmakers MacInnes and Nason felt needed to be told. With the help of CTV Television, this hope became a reality when the network decided to support the documentary.

Established in 2005 as the largest award of its kind in Canada, the Shaw Rocket Prize is open to all independent Canadian producers of children’s programming. The winner of Shaw Rocket Prize’s $50,000 award is determined annually by students from the Royal Conservatory of Music’s innovative Learning Through The Arts program (LTTA). Incorporated as part of the classroom curriculum, more than 700 Grade six, seven, and eight students from schools across Canada will participate in discussion, evaluation, and selection of a winner from four finalists. The winner of the 2007 Shaw Rocket Prize will be announced May 3 in Toronto, Ontario.

About Sea to Sea Productions

Kent Nason and Teresa MacInnes formed Sea to Sea Productions Ltd. in 1998 with a dream of making the films they felt were important. The husband and wife team enjoy working with young and old, providing an opportunity for people of all cultures and strata of society to share their stories. As well as making their own films, Kent and Teresa enjoy working with a variety of independent producers. Kent has traveled all over the world and has shot dozens of films that have been broadcast internationally. One of these film series, The Human Race, won him a Gemini for best cinematography in 1995. Teresa comes from a social work background has directed more than a dozen documentaries for television that deal with important social issues.  Her most recent, Generation XXL, will broadcast on the CBC on March 8th @ 8:00 PM.

About Students for Teaching Peace

Students for Teaching Peace was formed in March of 2005 after completing a successful trip to Serbia. The group has since traveled to Northern Ireland and are currently working on their next documentary about that experience. Students for Teaching Peace are committed to the promotion of understanding and respect of all beliefs and cultures, through advocacy, non-violent conflict resolution, and education. The members of this student-based and run organization travel internationally to promote the message of peace. At home they share an on-going pursuit of empowering communities to develop their own social responsibility and to create a peaceful future and compassion for others.

Peaceful Schools International

Peaceful Schools International (PSI) is a Canadian charitable organization that was established in 2001 by Dr. Hetty van Gurp, an internationally recognized educator and author. Following the death of her son Ben in 1991as the result of a bullying incident, Hetty has devoted her time and energy towards supporting schools that have declared a commitment to creating and maintaining a culture of peace. PSI has over 225 member schools around the world! There students, teachers and community members work together to ensure that everyone feels safe, respected, and valued. Reader’s Digest recently honoured Dr. Hetty van Gurp as one of five of Canada’s Heroes for 2006.

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Media Contact:
Teresa MacInnes 
tel: (902) 826-2858

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