Workshops, Mentorship & Networking

Herland is a Video Production & Mentorship Program which will allows women an opportunity to explore their creative vision with the goal of making a personal short film.  These women will acquire skills and experience in the art of filmmaking as they progress through the filmmaker’s journey. The goal is to put the power of image-making and storytelling into the hands of local, diverse women with limited access and/or experience, and to foster a spirit of collaboration in safe and open environment.  This project builds community, develops skills, provides training while encouraging the continuation of sharing their unique stories though video-making. Preference will be given to women of diversity.

Herland's goal is simple: bring stories by and about women to a larger audience.


The Herland Feminist Film Festival was established in 1989 in Calgary when the Status of Women Action Committee joined with the Women of Colour Collective to host a film-focused fundraiser. Building up audiences through the years, the festival peaked in 2003-2004 with an audience of 1,700. The festival was cancelled in 2007 after its funding from the Canada Council was decreased and also because of the growth of other local film festivals. In its time, the festival provided a venue for films that covered a range of feminist topics not typically seen in the mainstream. Herland was reborn in 2015 as a video production & mentorship program, with a generous grant from Telus Optik. Led by Sandi Somers of Spring Street Films, Herland found a new home at CSIF, with access to gear, workshop space, editing suites, and screening opportunities. In 2015, the cohort consisted of seven emerging women in film, and all  seven films  were screened at Theatre Junction Grand and on the Telus Optik Network. A second cohort was established in 2016, supporting 5 women at the intermediate level of filmmaking. Funded by Canada Council for the Arts, Spring Street Films and Sandi Somers once again partnered with CSIF, with screenings of all five projects in October of 2016 at Theatre Junction Grand.   Herland’s third cohort was formed in late 2016, again funded by Telus Optik, and seven diverse women saw their first film projects completed and screened in May 2017 at Theatre Junction Grand and on the Telus Optik  Network.

We gratefully acknowledge the support of CSIF, Spring Street Films, Storyhive, Canada Council for the Arts and The I.A.T.S.E. 212 Women's Committee  

Herland's History
From festival to mentorship