Centered around the theme of hope, a panel of filmmakers, climate change experts and academics gathered to discuss pressing, sustainability-related topics during the first-ever Sustainability Evening on March 7 as part of the Kamloops Film Festival.
Peter ter Weeme, BCLC’s Chief Social Purpose Officer and Vice President, Player Experience, moderated a five-person panel discussion focused on climate change, sustainability and reconciliation. These themes were portrayed in the three films shown throughout the evening: Unicorn Code, a short family-friendly fantasy that emphasizes our need to protect what we love; Returning Home, a documentary that discusses the impacts of residential schools on our Indigenous communities; and Fly Monarca, a thrilling adventure amidst the current climate change crisis.
“Kamloops and the surrounding regions have been at the Canadian epicenter of the climate crisis over the past year,” said ter Weeme during the panel, which also included the UN’s Robert Sandford. “The BCLC-sponsored sustainability evening provides us with inspiration, through the medium of film and dialogue with a panel of experts, towards meaningful climate action and adaption."
During the panel discussion, attendees reflected on the films and asked the panelists related questions at the end of the evening. Martin Glegg, writer and director of The Unicorn Code, spoke to the responsibility that storytellers have to communicate climate-related content.
“It’s really important for us storytellers to listen to the other experts out there and to try and change the narrative; I think the truth is on our side,” he explained. “The climate is suffering, and we need to find new ways to get that out to the world to challenge the status quo.”
The event concluded with a thought-provoking conversation about the importance of change at the community level.
“The greatest power is at the community level,” said Sandford. “It is where we change the narrative of the story. It is where we become courageous, informed and relentless citizens.”
Other panel participants included Dr. Michael Mehta, Professor of Geography and Environmental Studies at Thompson Rivers University; Martin Glegg, writer and director of The Unicorn Code; Katherine Koniecki, producer of The Unicorn Code; and Nina Sidorczuk, producer of The Guardian.
BCLC is proud to be a returning sponsor of the Kamloops Film Festival, which continues to March 12.