Below are some of the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) that folks usually have about volunteering:
Volunteering is defined as an unpaid activity where someone gives their time to help a not-for-profit organisation. Most non-profits and social organizations simply could not exist without the support of volunteers.
There are lots of reasons to volunteer:
Volunteering allows you to connect to your community and make it a better place.
Dedicating your time as a volunteer helps you make new friends and boost your social skills.
Volunteering gives you free access to local, national and international filmmaking.
Through volunteering you can build new skills, expand your professional networks and add new experience to your résumé.
What events/activities does FIN offer?
The Atlantic International Film Festival began as a tiny, grassroots operation in St. John’s, Newfoundland in 1981, relocating to Halifax the following year. Nearly four decades later, the organization is firmly established as one of Canada’s premier film festivals and is now a year-round celebration of the artistry, education and industry of independent film.
In 2017 the Atlantic International Film Festival Association rebranded to FIN. FIN is a transformation in branding and identity designed to increase access and awareness, to expand reach and audience, and to tie all programs and events together, including:
FIN Atlantic International Film Festival (formerly Atlantic Film Festival) – Presentation platform for 200+ independent films from the Atlantic region, Canada, and around the world; FIN increases cultural access and is a champion of creativity and innovation.
FIN Partners (formerly Strategic Partners: International Co-Production Market) – Canada’s top international co-production/co-financing market, focusing on film, television, and digital fiction. FIN Partners strengthens the film industry with a focus on developing Atlantic Canadian content with 150 top regional, national and international industry players; 1-2-1 meetings, keynotes, and panels.
FIN Kids (formerly ViewFinders: Atlantic Film Festival for Youth and other school-age targeted initiatives) – Strengthens and expands cultural education for young people across Atlantic Canada. FIN actively promotes equity, cultural and social awareness through its touring SCO-compatible film program, hands-on media workshops with regional film professionals, and Youth Film Competition.
FIN Outdoor (formerly AFF’s Outdoor Film Experience) – Free summertime outdoor screenings taking place at locations across HRM, enabling participants to see their city and familiar spaces through a different lens, consider the potential and possibilities of their community, and their ability to contribute to it.
FIN Makers (formerly Atlantic Filmmaker Focus, Atlantic Filmmaking Awards, Script Development Program, Script Pitch Program) – Nurturing Nova Scotia’s film Industry through development and recognition initiatives.
What events/activities does FIN need volunteers for?
We actively seek volunteers for the following core FIN activities, taking place within HRM. Volunteer opportunities are posted on our volunteer database, Better Impact typically between 1 week and 1 month in advance of events:
FIN Atlantic International Film Festival (September 12-19, 2019)
Front of House, Transport, Marketing & Communications, Operations & Special Events, Office/Administrative support
FIN Partners (September 12-14, 2019)
Ambassadors, Registration Assistant, Marketing & Communications
FIN Kids (October-November 2019)
Front of House, Marketing & Communications – Social Media Crew, Photographers
FIN Outdoor (June-July 2019)
Operations, Marketing & Communications
In addition to event support, there are behind the scenes volunteer opportunities leading up to FIN events including, but not limited to: office support, research, popcorn popping and assistance in preparation for Festival activities.
We also have one-off screenings and events taking place throughout the year that require Front of House support.
Does FIN offer volunteer information sessions?
Yes, information sessions are held on a regular basis, throughout July and August. Each information session runs about an hour and provides information on volunteering with FIN. You’ll have the opportunity to meet FIN staff, as well as other volunteers.
What are the volunteer benefits?
To receive any volunteer benefits, volunteers are required to sign up for and complete a minimum of two volunteer shifts during the AIFF. Volunteer shifts range from 3-7 hours in length, and can start as early as 5AM, and end as late as 2AM, depending on the volunteer role.
Basic volunteer benefits include:
FIN volunteer t-shirt
Volunteer badge, which provides volunteers with free Metro Transit during FIN (September 12-19,2019)
Light snacks and beverages are available during your volunteer shift; they can be picked up at Volunteer HQ or, if space permits, at your Festival venue.
Invitation to volunteer celebration activities
Are there any job opportunities at FIN?
Yes! We do hire short-term contract staff in support of FIN activities.
Many, but not all the event coordinator positions in support FIN Atlantic International Film Festival and FIN Kids are supported through the province or Nova Scotia’s Job Creation Partnership, which has specific requirements.
We hire part time Box Office support positions, for 1-3 weeks leading up to and during FIN Atlantic International Film Festival.
All job opportunities are posted on finfestival.ca/jobs
Does FIN pay for volunteer parking?
As a non-profit, we simply don’t have the resources to pay for parking or taxis. Most FIN activities take place within the Halifax core, making them accessible by bus, ferry, foot, bike, along with parking lot or metered parking options. Typically, Metro Transit provides free transit access during FIN Atlantic International Film Festival (September 12-19, 2019) when you present your volunteer badge. Metred and lot parking tends to be free or offer reduced rates on weekends or on weeknights after 6PM.
How do I sign up to volunteer with FIN?
Head over to our volunteer webpage or go directly to FIN’s volunteer database, Better Impact to create a profile or login. If you have questions or need help filling out the application, please contact the volunteer coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or 902-334-1429
Your volunteer profile will provide us with all the necessary information we will need – who you are, what experience or interests you might have, your availability, and what sort of volunteer roles you might be interested in with FIN.
Whether it’s a behind the scenes role or public facing; volunteer roles that draw from existing skills and interests or provide you with the opportunity to develop new ones; the more you tell us about what you’re looking for, the better job we can do at matching you to a volunteer role that suits you, and ensure a positive volunteer experience.
What are the requirements to volunteer?
19 years of age or older
Customer service oriented with a friendly and helpful demeanour
When needed, flexible and accommodating within their volunteer shift
Conscientious and reliable
Is volunteer training required?
Training depends upon the volunteer role; training requirements are outlined in each of the volunteer role descriptions listed on Better Impact, with many of the volunteer roles requiring only brief training at the start of the volunteer's first shift.
Front of House (Theatre) volunteers are required to attend a more comprehensive training session, taking place at Cineplex Cinemas Park Lane and offering insight into ticketing hardware/software, theatre procedures, and an opportunity to meet and mingle with fellow volunteers and staff prior to the busyness of the Festival.
Social Media volunteers are required to attend training sessions to overview the Festival’s social media platforms, messaging, and meet other members of the crew/staff.
Volunteer training in advance of the Festival is also where you can pick up your volunteer t-shirt and volunteer badge.
Training takes place about a week out from the start of FIN’s Atlantic International Film Festival. The level of training depends upon the volunteer role. Training requirements are outlined in each of the volunteer role descriptions listed on Better Impact, with many of the volunteer roles requiring only brief training at the start of the volunteers first shift.
Do any volunteer roles require specialized skills or equipment?
Some roles do require a range of specific requirements, including:
Transport Drivers: a current driver’s license and current driver's abstract
Social Media Team: experience on social media platforms, smart phone with working camera and a data plan, for real time posting
Volunteer Photographer: must own/have access to a quality DSLR camera with a lens and a flash, and the knowledge and ability to operate their camera manually, with a minimum of 16 GB storage
Details about specialised skills and equipment are always outlined in volunteer role descriptions.