• New York

The SDGs in Action Film Festival, coordinated by the UN DESA Division for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), is a competition seeking short films that highlight how people and organizations around the world are taking action for the 17 global goals. The Festival was launched in 2018 in connection with the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development that takes place each July at UN Headquarters in New York. The competition offers amateur and professional filmmakers around the globe the chance to submit animated or live-action films up to 20 minutes long that showcase a person or project working on tangible solutions to the world’s biggest threats and making the SDGs our reality.

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Entries will be accepted in the following categories for 2019:

  • Protecting our planet
  • Reducing inequalities
  • Building peace
  • Ensuring quality education and jobs
  • Young Filmmaker (24 years old or younger)
  • SDGs in Virtual Reality/360 degrees

To enter the Festival, participants must upload their film (up to 20 minutes in length) to the site of Freefilmway. In doing so, participants must follow all terms, conditions and policies specified by the site.

Participants must include the YouTube or Vimeo link to their film in the cover letter of their submission as well as contact information. Participants who cannot be contacted, or who withdraw their film from YouTube or Vimeo prior to the announcement of Festival winners, will be automatically disqualified.

Participants may use any type of film or photo technology to complete their entry, including but not limited to video, mobile camera, web camera, photography, animation and artwork.

Following the deadline, a selection committee comprised of an international jury panel will select 6 finalist films to premiere at the United Nations High-level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development in July 2019. All finalists will be contacted after the judging selection is complete.


United States


The Prize for finalists will be the opportunity for their films to be showcased to the world during the special event at the HLPF, the central UN platform for follow-up and review of the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, as well as an invitation to attend the event and a storytelling workshop in New York in July 2019.


  • The Festival is open to all individuals and groups. Employees of the United Nations Secretariat or its agencies, programmes or funds, are not eligible for entries in the Festival.
  • Participants under 18 years of age may participate with the permission of their parents or legal guardians.
  • If the film of an entrant under 18 years of age is chosen as a semifinalist or finalist, and written parental or guardian permission cannot be provided, the United Nations Secretariat has the right to reject the entry.
  • Entries can be submitted in one of the six official languages of the United Nations (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish). However, entries in languages other than English are required to have subtitles in English.
Eligible Regions: Open for All

Application Process

Submit your film through the Apply Now link.

To get more exciting opportunities like this, at your fingertips, install the Youth Opportunities Mobile App here from your cellphone.

Application Deadline: April 26, 2019

Application ClosedOfficial link
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