Can your phone shoot video? What about your computer — does it have a built-in camera? If so, check out what one teen did to make Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month (TDVAPM) more meaningful for his community.
Young filmmaker Jordan Coleman is using his love of movies to speak out about dating abuse during TDVAPM. Jordan, a 16-year-old from Hackensack, New Jersey, is the writer and director of “Payin’ the Price,” a feature length film which focuses on teen dating abuse.
Two years ago, when Chris Brown made headlines for abusing Rihanna, Jordan was moved by all of the coverage of the incident. It was then that he was inspired to create this film about teen dating abuse and its effect on individuals and communities.
“Everyone had an opinion about what happened between Chris and Rihanna,” Jordan said in an interview with Nick Chiles, hosted on Denene Millner’s blog, My Brown Baby. “The incident brought teen dating violence into American homes like never before.”
For him, this was the perfect opportunity to mesh his passion for filmmaking with his passion for making a difference in the community. Today, Jordan is preparing to embark on a 20-city national tour showcasing his project. He hopes that this film will ignite a national dialogue.
Jordan Coleman is a perfect example of a teen using his resources to promote awareness about dating abuse. He used his own time, money and creativity to make an awesome, awareness-raising movie. Using artistic expression — be it writing a poem, painting a picture or writing a song — is a way to convey personal feelings about a topic to a larger audience.
You could make a movie like Jordan did. It doesn’t have to be as large-scale — you can make a two-minute clip and post it to YouTube. Most digital cameras, cell phones and computers now have video cameras built in so it’s easy to make your own film. You can even film yourself or your friends simply talking about the issue, post the video to YouTube or Vimeo and then share it through Facebook. Check out some of our videos to get some ideas for your own.
We want to know how you’re bringing awareness to dating abuse. How are you spreading the word and participating in TDVAPM?