A University of Windsor graduate wants to brighten the city with a quick look at a community that is fighting back. With help from a small grant from the Social Work Students Association, Matt Krawl has created a short film about Ford City, the neighbourhood east of Walkerville centred on Drouillard Road.
“I hope to leave a mark on Windsor by showing the good things about the area,” said Krawl.
The film We Are has no dialogue and runs for two minutes. It highlights community events in Ford City along with its heritage, and showcases the music of local artist Jody Raffoul, who gave consent for his song “Home” to be used in the film.
Krawl did a placement in Ford City for one of his social work classes last year.
“There is a negative stigma about Drouillard Road, I wanted to get the word out that Ford City is open for business and is opening its doors to the public,” he said.
The student association awarded $500 grants to each of four placement students to help them give back to their placement communities. To receive his grant, Krawl pulled negative stories from newspapers and told the association he wanted to create a change. He was awarded the grant in early July.
“I previously had the opportunity to help produce a documentary about homelessness in the county;” Krawl said. “I was able to see the impact of showing things through film. I see that people are drawn to the dramatic visuals. It’s a medium that I would like to use in communities.”
The film was directed by Tim Swaddling. He and his cinematographer Juarrod Ferris started filming in May and the video was completed in mid-September. It has already been used for promotion at city meetings, says Stephen Lynn, Community Development Coordinator at Ford City Neighbourhood Renewal.
“We’re getting a great response from the public, by showcasing the neighborhood and showing the social side of things,” says Lynn. “There are always community events going on.”
He adds that residents are excited to see the finished work because most of them are the stars, and they have been watching and helping the film crew all summer. The film will premiere to the public in early February 2013, but no location has yet been set. For more information, call Lynn at 519-915-9583 or go to fordcity.ca.
— by Jess Craymer