The Vlogstar Challenge, an annual vlogging workshop scheme, is returning to seek out and develop the best and brightest young vloggers.
The Vlogstar Challenge aims to give young people the tools to use YouTube as a platform for expression. Its workshops will be offered for free to local youth organisations and schools in London and Essex, the only requirement being that at least 25 people from any given organisation must sign up.
The project is supported by the Jack Petchey Foundation and Media Trust. Naomi Sesay, Head of Youth Media at Media Trust elaborates on the origin of the project, saying: “The idea originated from a previous programme we delivered for young people called Digital Storytelling, where we taught 13-to-24-year-olds how to use their smartphones as a filming device to create content that mattered to them most. The content created was vlog-style, and was broadcast on a Sky News platform in the run-up to the 2014 election.”
The Vlogstar Challenge workshops are open to 16-to-25-year-olds, and aim to cover everything you need to know about making a vlog, from technical aspects to character-building tools. “We impart information on presentation, image, purpose, belief systems and self-leadership,” says Naomi. “This enhances their content and gives them confidence to be certain in what they believe in and therefore mindful of what they publish on a public platform.”
Once they’ve participated in the workshops, the newly-skilled vloggers go head-to-head in the Vlogstar Competition. In the 2016 contest, 15 finalists were picked from 1,000 entrants, and the winner was chosen by judges at a live event hosted by BAFTA. The finalists included study tips from vlogger Fateha Begum, and Nathaniel Hawley‘s video about living with dyslexia. Abigail Holsborough was crowned overall winner of the 2016 Vlogstar Challenge for her video, Confessions of an Advertising Intern.
“Many things surprised us,” Naomi says, of the 2016 competition. “The ease at how many young people took to the workshop and created content so easily. The subject matter that was created – mental health issues, LGBT content, disability and environmental issues. It showed that young people are keenly aware and worried about their personal issues and worldwide issues. The quality of some of the vlogs was amazing.”
The 2017 competition winner will be selected in summer 2017. They will win £2,000 for their school or youth organisation, £500 worth of production equipment, and one-to-one mentoring with YouTube in their studio space.
Media Trust have confirmed they are keen to expand the scheme and are exploring ways it can be opened up to other regions. Full details on the workshops and how to apply can be found at vlogstarchallenge.com