What is Tampon Tuesday?

Menstruation. Something every woman has to deal with, whether that is with sanitary pads, tampons, or alternative options. But what happens when you can’t afford those products? When you have to decide between buying groceries or feminine hygiene products? That’s where Holly Mastrogiacomo comes in.

Holly is the owner of Smitten Apparel, a consignment clothing store in Guelph, Ont. In addition to supporting and empowering women by selling clothing in a range of different sizes, Smitten Apparel has also implemented the Tampon Tuesday program as part of its community outreach. Founded in 2009 by CTV London, Tampon Tuesday holds events in which the admission is one box of menstrual hygiene items. Smitten Apparel has take this on as well, offering a five per cent discount on your purchase when you donate an item and a ballot entry to win a gift certificate.

Inspired by Holly’s story and her drive to create change in her community, I just HAD to interview her. We talked about Tampon Tuesday, her recent Goodworking experience, and her advice for women starting their own business. Click on the video below to see my full interview with Holly Mastrogiacomo, owner of Smitten Apparel.

For more information on Holly and Smitten Apparel, go to http://www.smittenapparel.ca. To learn more about Tampon Tuesday and get involved, go to http://www.tampontuesday.com.

Young and In Love….With Film? Check Out TIFF’s Young Creators Co-Lab.

Young filmmakers and movie enthusiasts will gather in Toronto this weekend for TIFF Next Wave 2017. The three-day event will feature 19 screenings, a 24-hour film challenge, and a Battle of the Scores.

Attendees will also be able to participate in the Young Creators Co-Lab, where they will have the opportunity to connect and collaborate with other young filmmakers and industry professionals. The Co-Lab schedule includes two panels; Women of the Web: Taking Space in the Digital Sphere, and Making the Change: A Conversation About Systemic Racism, The Media and Evolving the Story.

“I think sort of as like inspiration and also affirmation to what young creators are already doing, the panels are in place to support them on their journey,” said Brigid Tierney, senior coordinator at TIFF. “But I think young people are really leading the way so we’re just responding to things that they are asking for and things they’re participating in.” In keeping with the themes of diversity and inclusion in the media, the co-lab ends with a Close-Up with James Laxton, the cinematographer on Oscar-nominated film Moonlight.

The festival itself is planned by a committee of twelve students, ranging in age from 15 to 18 years old. For all the young filmmakers looking for inspiration, collaboration and knowledge, the Co-Lab is worth taking a look at. With the world constantly changing, young filmmakers have the opportunity to drive the conversations on diversity, and representation in both on and off screen. When asked what she hopes participants take away from the event, Tierney said “We notice a lot of our high-schoolers, sometimes they don’t go to art high schools and they feel like they’re the only ones who are like really into film. So I hope that they meet other people who are into film, maybe people to work with and collaborate with.”

The TIFF Next Wave Young Creator Co-Lab is on Feb. 17th at 9:30am-5pm in the TIFF Bell Lightbox. You can find more info on the co-lab and all the other parts of the festival at their website; http://www.tiff.net/next-wave/.

An Interview With Lisa Lightbourn-Lay and Rhonda-Marie Avery, Director and Star of 8% No Limit

This week I am attending the Zonta Film Festival in Kitchener-Waterloo, a festival showcasing films that matter and are inspired by women. 9 films are being screened between November 8-10th, some of which have Q&A’s with the director afterwards. I had the opportunity to interview Lisa Lightbourn-Lay and Rhonda-Marie Avery, the director and the star of 8% No Limit, before their opening night screening.

8% No Limit follows Rhonda-Marie Avery, a woman with 8% vision who sets out to run the entire Bruce Trail. The Bruce Trail is 885km and Rhonda plans to run it in 20 days, with the help of approximately 50 guides. Keep reading to see the full interview!

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An Interview With Una Lorenzen, Director of ‘Yarn’

Hi friends. The Guelph Film Festival is this weekend, and it is showcasing some really incredible films this year. In addition to it’s great selection of interesting films, the festival also has some really fantastic venues (such as the Golden Bus!). The festival runs from November 3rd-6th, and even though I am unable to attend, I highly recommend you check it out.

One of the films being shown this year is Yarn, a documentary follows those who are using yarn and crochet to create art in an interesting new way. The director of the film, Una Lorenzen, tells the story of artists using are taking a stance using the creative method of yarn. In anticipation for the Guelph Film Festival this weekend, I spoke to Una Lorenzen about her film and what she hopes people take away from it.

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