The Video Contest


The Speak Truth To Power student video competition that encourages middle and high school students to become engaged in human rights. The video contest is sponsored by New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) and the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights (RFK Center) and is based on Kerry Kennedy’s book Speak Truth To Power.

Contest participants must choose one of the RFK Center Human Rights Defenders identified on this site and create a 3-5 minute video short  film. We are looking for student films that utilize creative storytelling to teach others about a human rights issue. The format is open to documentary, stop motion, narrative, digital photo essay or other innovative explorations that involve filmmaking components.

We are looking for films to creatively answer the following questions:
What is the human rights issue and who is the activist who has attempted to improve the situation?
​How did the activist attempt to improve the situation?
How is their work connected with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights?
​How is this work connected to the student's local community (neighborhood/school)?
When relevant, what is the activist's organization, or how is their work being continued in the world?
What can the activist's life teach us?
Videos can begin to be submitted for the 2015 competition on September 1, 2014.
All videos must be uploaded to the judging website by 11:59 PM  on February 14, 2015.
For more information pleas visit the video contest website at

Join a Tribeca Film Institute Teaching Artist and Speak Truth Lead Teacher for a training covering the following (this is a FREE workshop):

Speak Truth To Power Curriculum & Video Contest 

Film activities to engage students

The Narrative Arc in short format production 

Production techniques

Post-production techniques

NOVEMBER 5,   4-7 PM at the SUFFOLK NYSUT OFFICE - Call 631-273-8822 to reserve your spot!

NOVEMBER 6,   4-7 PM at the NASSAU NYSUT OFFICE - Call 516-496-2035 to reserve your spot!


View our contest promo video
View the middle school 2013 2nd place winners' video about Kailash Sityarthi, the 2014 Nobel Peace Price winner