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2018 The Community Partners Project 

Video is a very powerful means to craft and deliver messages about an organization. Nowadays it is expected for a website to incorporate video. However many organization do not have the means or the training to produce a high quality video. This program serves to empower organizations to create and craft their own messages. 

Princeton TV’s Community Partners Project (CPP) program will teach documentary video and/or new media skills to non-profit organizations throughout Princeton and the Greater Princeton area. The group’s project may be about the organization, a program of the organization or an issue that their organization addresses.

The project is free to the organization. Princeton TV provides all the instruction, technical assistance, equipment, and other expenses that go into the production of the video. 

The video may be used by the organization for marketing and promotion, fundraising (though not primary purpose), educational uses and/or outreach.

When the projects are complete, Princeton TV will organize a premiere screening and helps groups plan how they will use their project. Princeton TV will also broadcast the finished project as well as post to Princeton TV’s online video archive.

How The Community Partners Project Works

Non-Profit or Charitable Organizations will be encouraged to apply for the CPP. Princeton TV anticipates two participating organizations in 2018. After the organizations have been selected, Princeton TV hires one or two professional filmmakers to be facilitators for the group. The facilitators will meet regularly with the members of the participating organization team. The facilitators and the team develop the idea for the short documentary (10 - 20 minutes), prepare a shooting script, and outline a production schedule. 

Facilitators will provide instruction in such things as strategies for telling the story, using the camera and lighting equipment, editing styles, new media techniques, and much more, as they guide the production team through the entire documentary process. Team members are also strongly encouraged to take workshops at Princeton TV, often at reduced rates or free.

A CPP project is expected to take about ten months to complete. Typically, primary shooting takes place in five to ten sessions and editing takes place over two to three months after shooting is complete.

What Princeton TV does in Community Partners Project

Princeton TV selects and pays the facilitators, provides the equipment, expendables, instruction and technical assistance required to design, produce and edit each video.

Most of the training will occur on-site in the home community of the participating group or at Princeton TV.  

When each group has finished their project, Princeton TV will organizes a premiere screening open to the general public. Throughout the process, Princeton TV staff answers questions, helps trouble-shoot problems, and offers other support and encouragement.

What the community organization does in Community Partners Project

The organization commits "sweat equity" for the duration of the project. It should be remembered that the time commitment for CPP is significant.

The organization forms a team of three to five members who will see the project through to completion, including one group member who will be the team liaison and the primary contact for Princeton TV.

During approximately the first twelve weeks, the production team meets regularly (perhaps once a week for 2- 3 hours), to brainstorm, design and script the project. Over the next two to three months, including some weekends, the team shoots the film. Then a two- to three-month editing phase begins during which the teams typically spend approximately 30 hours assembling their footage into a short video. During all these phases, some members of the team will take Princeton TV workshops to support their production skills.

The work can be divided up among the members of the production team. We do not expect every person in the group to be present at every meeting, every shoot, or all editing sessions. But we do expect that each member of the team will remain actively involved throughout the entire process, learn aspects of video or New Media story telling, and share in the work―and the excitement.

Application Process

A selection committee will be made up of Princeton TV staff,  volunteer members of the Princeton community. The committee will carefully review all proposals and supporting documents. The committee interview organization members to get a sense of its strength and commitment to the proposed project, and to learn how the video will be used.

The Selection Criteria

The selection committee will choose the two organizations in 2018 to participate in the Community Partnership Project. The successful applicants will be chosen based on...


• The organization has a reasonably clear vision of the video they want to make. 

• The organization has a reasonably clear vision on how the video will be used to benefit their organization. (fundraising may not be the primary purpose of the video)

• The organization is prepared to make the necessary commitment of time, energy and creativity to the project. 

• The organization s stable enough and has enough manpower to commit to handle the rigors of production.

• Priority is given to proposals from organizations serving low-income communities. 

• We do not require or expect any prior video or filmmaking experience. 

Application Guidelines 

The applicant must address the following:

About the group: What is its mission and how does it work to achieve it? How long has the group existed and what is its history? How active is the group? Who are its constituents and how actively do they support the group? Why is the group relevant to the community or the issue it seeks to represent in its video? We may ask the group to provide financial and other information during the review process.

About the proposed film: What will the video be about? What message does the group want to convey through the video? How will the group use the finished video to reach and motivate its constituents and others?

About the production team: What are the names of the group members who will be on the team? How long has each group member been involved with the group? How many hours a week is each group member able to commit to the project? Which group member will serve as project coordinator and be the main contact person for Princeton TV throughout the project?

The application will be asked to also include letters of support from individuals or organizations who support the work of the group, who believe that a video would be important to the community, and who might use the completed production.

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Submission Deadline is May 11, 2018

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