Teaching In A New Community

FILMMAKERS WITHOUT BORDERS works closely with overseas schools and community organizations to ensure that participants are able to share their skills with the students who need it most. Whether it be a bilingual school in rural Honduras or an orphanage in India, our partner organizations form the backbone of participants’ time in the classroom and truly anchor their year abroad.



Our team of curriculum developers and seasoned educators work closely with NYC-based classroom teachers and overseas staff to design specialized culturally-specific curriculum and lesson plans for each participating filmmaker. All of of our curriculum is developed in direct consultation with in-country specialists in order to highlight a particular culture and the role of media within it.

Each classroom and facility is different but all participating filmmakers are provided the essentials for teaching filmmaking and digital storytelling.  In some cases schools are equipped with fully-functional computer labs, in other host sites FILMMAKERS WITHOUT BORDERS’ equipment may be the most sophisticated technology in the community.  In either scenario, host organizations’ provide basic electricity and running water and a safe classroom environment.

Living Like A Local

Host schools and organizations provide housing for all participants for 1 full year. In some cases, filmmakers may live with a local family, share a house with other local or foreign teachers, or be provided with their own apartment. All housing sites include a furnished bedroom, electricity, and running water as well as access to a bathroom, kitchen, or cafeteria. Additionally, participants are provided three meals/day for the entire length of the program.

FILMMAKERS WITHOUT BORDERS encourages our Fellows to embrace their new environment during their year abroad.  We’ve designed a series of weekly assignments aimed at providing creative opportunities for participants to explore their community and to better understand the rhythms of the respective society and culture. Participants are encouraged to seek out local resources to co-produce films throughout the year.

The well-being and safety of our Fellows is FILMMAKERS WITHOUT BORDERS’ main concern. All FWB Fellows are required to secure independent travel insurance in order to protect against unforeseen circumstances while abroad. We also provide 24/7 contact with a US-based team member and ensure that a safe and reliable host community helps transition our participants into the local culture.  

Technology Integration & Cultural Exchange

Before participants are sent overseas, they are provided with 20+ digital devices to be used in their classroom.  The standard equipment package includes 10+ Kodak Playsport cameras, a Canon DSLR camera, external hard drives, microphones, a mini-projector, and much more. Students use these devices on a daily basis and a portion of these digital tools are donated to the local host organization in an effort to have a sustainable and long-lasting impact in the local community.

One unique aspect of our organization is our ability to connect participants’ overseas students with classrooms and students back in the US.  FWB Fellows and US-based classroom teachers help their respective students co-create short films with students on the other side of the world.  These virtual collaborations allow students to connect with classrooms and cultures they might not normally be able to interact with.

From teaching students to interacting with colleagues to engaging with their families and friends – cultural exchange is at the heart of the FILMMAKERS WITHOUT BORDERS experience.  We recognize that the filmmaking process is an incredible way to learn about and experience a new culture and our classroom curriculum and participant projects are designed to create the next generation of cultural ambassadors.

Staying Connected While Overseas

Participating filmmakers document their day-to-day experience and submit evidence of works-in-progress to FWB’s US-based staff on a weekly basis. Participants regularly record audio reflections and upload video-based activities via such social media and online video platforms as Vimeo, Youtube, Facebook, and Instragram.

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Ready to share your skills with the next generation of digital storytellers?  Apply Now!