Grand River Film Festival was thrilled to partner once again for the fourth annual Hospice of Waterloo Region short film competition!

This short film contest called on filmmakers and storytellers to focus on death as a part of living. We wanted you to use your artistic expression to create a film of 5 minutes (excluding credits) in length that explores and educates others about the personal journeys through death, dying and bereavement in an authentically unique way that has a positive influence on the community.

You Only Die Once

#YODOContest is about living well until you die. This phrase reminds us that life matters right until the end and that how we live to the end does matter. While death is a natural part of life, many people distance themselves from the topic of death, which has created a death-denying culture. This “death denial” causes us to avoid the subject, leaving us unprepared to support our family, friends, neighbours and community to live well until the end of life. Hospice Waterloo Region believes that living well until we die begins by challenging our ”death denial” and igniting conversations about death, dying and bereavement.

For additional questions, definitions, the Hospice’s mission, and to contact them, please visit the contest FAQ webpage.

We are proud to announce the 2024 winners. Congratulations to:

1st prize: “Daisy” created by Mridul Pawha and Madhav Kapur, Wedesi Entertainment
2nd prize: “Live After” by Houssen Salih, Salih Studios
Honourable Mention: “Love Fully” by Madison Carver