Hate speech, racism, and xenophobia against migrant and Roma communities is rising in eastern Slovakia. Local cultural and creative industries do not have inclusive programming to bring communities together. Very few cultural centres and cinemas offer accessibility and outreach for minority communities and people with mental or physical disabilities.
2,000 Euro Prize 2022
Region: Košice Region
Sector: Civil Society / Social Economy
Fields of action: Non-formal education, Disability, Culture
Project owner: CINEFIL, o.z. (Kino Úsmev) / CINEFIL (Cinema Smile)
Responsible person: Barbora Andor Tóthová, Natália Centková
Inclusive cinema (“Inkluzívne kino“) is a unique cinema in Slovakia that offers film-related educational and cultural programming to marginalised communities and the public. The cinema has a film school to connect children and youth from marginalised communities, as well as a film festival and film screenings accessible for the blind, deaf, and people with dementia and autism.
Inclusive Cinema was founded and run by Kino Úsmev. We organise the initiative’s projects, including dramaturgy, technical support, and fundraising. The organisation Usmej sa sa mň̌a brings children with mental and physical disabilities to film workshops; ETP Slovensko and Keď môžem pomôžem brings children from the Roma community. We are also connected with arts institutions in Slovakia and work with partner organisations in Norway and Iceland to develop inclusive screenings internationally.
One of the main pillars of the project is to create and involve marginalised communities in new programmes. Children in our programmes unlock their creative potential and become more sensitive to the needs of others. Through screenings and the film festival, Inclusive cinema offers cultural programming to build understanding in the community. In 2022, we will host an international conference on inclusion and cultural diversity.
Inclusive Cinema can be applied in various other contexts and countries. Non-profit, cultural and arts organisations can be inspired by our activities and develop more inclusive programming, spaces, or outreach. Cinemas can install an induction loop to support people with hearing difficulties; organisations can launch creative workshops to connect people from different backgrounds.
Inclusive Cinema reinvents a space usually used for consumption; it strives to create a new, non-commercial culture of cinema. The project’s film schools shift the visitors’ roles from passive consumers to cultural producers. The result is a cinema with a unique role that opens its doors to marginalised communities and offers a critical perspective of institutional framework. The innovative actions of the project range from an accessible environment to its rich cultural programme with technical and dramaturgical adaptations for those who are overlooked by multiplex cinemas.