Collaborating with a community relies upon an in depth understanding of it’s identity. Local histories, cultural diversity, political and decision making structures and cultures, cross-cultural engagement, local assets and resources (including social and cultural), accessibility and inclusion realities and, of course, the physical environment itself, both built and natural.  As facilitators who are usually visiting a community to deliver work, we can’t obtain the depth of understanding that a local resident has unless we choose to live there for a period of time that locals might consider necessary to ‘really get’ how a community functions. For this reason alone, when undertaking any work requiring us to explore place based solutions to problems, we argue the need to include local people from the very beginning as drivers of the engagement process. And there are many more reasons.

By engaging with the community early and inclusively to frame how the work can be designed and delivered we maximise the way local people and agencies are able to participate in, advocate through and be meaningfully involved in the work.

Involving people from the very beginning enables a better ‘behind the scenes’ sense of how the community works. We honour the fact that local people own their community and that their active involvement in shaping how it is designed and managed is in the best interests of everyone. Even when an inclusive process seems ‘messy’ and takes longer than an individual simply making a decision.  By involving community representatives in the way we design and facilitate our methodology they are also exposed to new skills and experiences and greater capacity to engage and participate in future decision making processes.

For us, connecting early with the community applies to both our film and engagement work, as each requires people to trust that we’ll represent their stories accurately. 

Our engagement processes invite activists, government, businesses, peak bodies and people from both marginalised and mainstream backgrounds to participate.

I’ve personally spent the majority of my professional life working with marginalised peoples in urban, rural and remote communities. I draw on these experiences to design creative ways of encouraging people in difficult circumstances to share their stories.

Everyone is differently abled and interested, so the work FC produces is designed to create space for people to be involved in many different ways. 

We want to work with local people interested in being involved from the start to design and guide the whole process.

We create space for others that may want to help coordinate or make artworks or network or photograph the process or do other specific tasks they have time and capacity for. We also seek to work with local people who have the ability to provide resources and spaces and ideas.

And we work with the community to promote and generate audience for what we produce.  

We collaborate with people to produce locally relevant films and events where people can connect and share and celebrate. 

We’re fermenting collaboration wherever we can.

I hope you can join us. 

Steph Vajda


Place based engagement with young people

Cross cultural engagement

Engaging with remote communities

Community arts workshops and engagement programs

Cultural mapping and placemaking

Community workshops, meetings, SpeakOuts and displays


Campaign building and strategising

Engagement for planning and decision making

Skill sharing network building programs

Participatory event planning

Project management mentoring

Grant writing and fundraising


Short film and documentary

Arts and cultural public workshops

Local events and festivals

Participatory and professional design

Promotional films and collateral

Participatory film making

Spaces for professional exchange

Cross cultural movement building