Impact Days

Documentaries have the power to motivate change! Now in its sixth year, Impact Days has helped hundreds of participants elevate and amplify the impact of their work.

Within the right constellation of partnerships, documentaries have the power to move hearts and minds towards concrete action. At Impact Days we facilitate meaningful alliances between filmmakers and key players in the vast ecosystem of organisations, policymakers and funders active around International Geneva. 


"My first experience of Impact Days has been exciting, because there are very few places where you have the opportunity to be seated next to someone from the UN, and a filmmaker, and a producer, and have these conversations about ways to advance and improve the conditions of human rights around the world." 

- Jon-Sesrie Goff,  Ford Foundation (USA)

Throughout January and February, our online and in-person programme includes an Impact Lab for selected Impact Days projects and a strategy workshop for NGOs and other international organisations. In March we then welcome a wider professional public to Geneva for three inspiring days of public pitches, impact case studies, talks with key impact players and curated networking sessions. These activities are open to international filmmakers, impact producers, NGOs and other organisations, philanthropists and the media. 

Call for projects now open!

Each year we select sixteen documentary projects from over a hundred international entries. Expert tutors coach the selected filmmaking teams over several weeks to develop an impact strategy around their project. When the FIFDH festival is in full swing in March, we connect the teams - in person - with potential impact partners in Geneva and beyond.

Submit a project

Selection criteria

A group of international impact experts will select projects driven by thoughtful and in-depth storytelling. The projects will have to demonstrate a compelling visual approach and a clear vision of the impact they want to make. As such, we consider all applications from independent filmmakers and/or producers who are committed to outreach goals and looking for partners and collaborators to make their films truly influential within the social justice and human rights space.

  • Non-fiction films of 52+ minutes in length.
  • Non-fiction series where each episode is 52+ minutes in length, and where all episodes in the series deal with the same human rights or social justice issue.
  • Only one project per company or filmmaker. However, an applicant can be a member of the key creative personnel on multiple projects.
  • We prefer projects in production and post-production but will also consider those in a late development stage. This as long as they can demonstrate clear access to the story and communities concerned, strong storytelling in the treatment, a teaser or trailer, and that there is an urgency to the story. 
  • Also eligible are recently completed films which can benefit from developing an urgent impact campaign that they wish to implement rapidly.
Benefits for selected film teams
  • Expert training on how to: identify and refine one’s impact goals ; develop and implement an impact strategy ; design and deliver an impact pitch ; identify potential partners outside the documentary industry ; identify and inspire strategic audiences 

International experts and impact producers will share their knowledge on how to create and follow-through an effective impact campaign. They will look at selected projects individually and give both personal and group feedback. This training will take place online on 18-19 January 2024 and throughout the month of February.

  • The opportunity to publicly pitch the project and its impact campaign in Geneva on 12 March, in the presence of potential funders and impact partners (NGOs, civil society, journalists).
  • Curated connections to key players (NGOs and other international organizations, foundations, impact producers) within their issue areas, through pre-arranged one-to-one meetings. 
  • Networking opportunities with current and previous international Impact Days participants: filmmakers, producers, impact producers, experts and Lab tutors, as well as other FIFDH Festival attendees. 

Please note: The selected film teams will have to attend all compulsory events (Impact Lab and Impact Days) with at least one participant. These will take place on 18-19 January online and 10-12 March in Geneva. All events will be held in English. 

    Costs and discounts

    Submission is free. Selected teams will then need to pay an accreditation fee of 180 CHF for each team member attending the event. This accreditation gives access to all Impact Lab and Impact Days activities including lunches and the closing cocktail, as well as to all festival screenings and debates for the entire duration of the FIFDH (8-17 March 2024). Travel to and from Geneva and accommodation is at the participants' own expense.

    Selected participants based in the DDC priority countries can have their accreditation, trip and accommodation covered by the FIFDH (see list of countries here).

    Selected participants who are members of partner organisations will benefit from a 50% discount on their accreditation cost (partner organisations here).

    Deadline for project submissions is 6 October 2023 at midnight CET

    Submit your project

    Learn more about the Impact Days

    The FIFDH Impact Days are organised in collaboration with:

    With the support of:

    Key dates

    5 September 2023
    Call for projects opens 

    6 October 2023
    Project submission deadline 

    18 January 2024
    Webinar for selected film teams and registered observers

    19 January 2024
    Webinar for selected film teams only

    16 February 2024
    Workshop for NGOs and international organisations in Geneva

    10-12 March 2024

    • Industry Programme for accredited participants: masterclasses, discussions, case studies, impact screenings and curated networking activities. 
    • Public pitch and one-to-one meetings between selected film teams, NGOs and international organisations, and philanthropists

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    Contact us

    Laura Longobardi
    Co-Editorial Director
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    Ana Castañosa
    Head of Industry
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    Sophie Mulphin 
    Impact Days, Strategic Comm. & NGO Programme Manager

    Previous editions

    > Impact Days 2023

    > Impact Days 2022

    >Impact Day 2021

    > Impact Day 2020

    > Impact Day 2019

    > Participating Organisations