May 29
Social Impact Film

Why we chose Social Impact Filmmaking – by Dr Kathryn Scott of Yorkshire Cancer Research

As a leading authority on cancer in Yorkshire, we wanted to take an evidence-based approach to tell the public about the relative safety of vaping in comparison to smoking tobacco, and to help smokers make an informed choice when trying to quit smoking. 

Recognising this is a complex issue with many misconceptions, we agreed that taking an in-depth dive into vaping and the possibility of using it as a quit aid would be of value to the audience and provide an opportunity to promote the latest evidence on vaping. 

 This was our first experience of social impact filmmaking. We entrusted the process to the production team and worked alongside them as they researched and shaped the narrative of the documentary. The film was designed to be entertaining and informative whilst establishing the principle that Yorkshire Cancer Research is a thought leader within the field. 

The production team understood it was essential that we consulted with leading health professionals throughout, who were able to provide clinical and research evidence to back up any points made. 

Giving a voice to Yorkshire people through their lived experience was also a must. The production team succeeded in finding people who were willing to share their experiences on film. Featuring real case studies of local people gave the campaign greater meaning throughout Yorkshire. It also helped to spark conversations about quitting smoking and helped people make an informed choice about vaping.   

It was important for us that part of the process involved testing content with key stakeholder audiences before releasing the film to the general public, giving us confidence that audiences would understand key messages. This process was facilitated by the producers of the film. 

 Making a film of this nature about vaping was groundbreaking for a charity. For us, impact in Yorkshire is a core objective and we are delighted the film managed to achieve its aims for the communities we serve as well as having a wider impact nationally and internationally. Since the launch of the film and supporting campaign, we have continued to engage with regional and national decision makers and support the continued change in the national stance to be more “vape friendly” among stop smoking services and the NHS. The more people that stop smoking, the more cancers that can be prevented and the more lives saved.   

To watch the film, follow this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7PT1TRo3b4M&t=187s

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