How to apply for the BFI Young Audiences Content Fund

Updates for live-action and animation development and production one year after launch

The team from the BFI’s Young Audiences Content Fund (YACF) updates live-action and animation producers on getting funding for their projects.

The YACF is a £57m three-year pilot, launched by the BFI in 2019, to support the creation of distinctive, high-quality content for audiences up to the age of 18. 

There is both production and development funding available for new programming – across all genres, techniques and formats – to air on free-to-access Ofcom regulated television and online platforms. It’s for content that entertains, informs and reflects the experiences of children and young people growing up in the UK today.

After its first year, the YACF team explains how the fund had evolved and offers specific advice on how to apply for funds and what can be learned from the projects that weren’t successful.

About the speakers

John Knowles is the executive for production of the Young Audiences Content Fund, responsible for assessing applications to the production fund and overseeing the productions of awarded programmes. He is also a BAFTA-nominated producer, development producer, director and voice actor who has worked for broadcasters such as the BBC, ITV, Nickelodeon, Disney and NBCUniversal.

Harriet Williams is the executive for development of the Young Audiences Content Fund, responsible for assessing applications to the development fund and overseeing the development of awarded programmes. Harriet has worked on the development of scripted live action series for Disney Channels and Disney+.

Hesham Sabry handles all legal and business affairs matters relating to the Young Audiences Content Fund. Prior to joining the BFI, he spent six years at the BBC as an in-house lawyer in the BBC Children’s commercial, rights and business affairs team working across its full range of output.

Gill Biddle is the project manager of the Young Audiences Content Fund. She has worked worked on various independent productions in a project and production management capacity including titles for the BBC, ITV, the Smithsonian Channel and National Geographic.

About the event

The video is the edited highlights of two remote events that took place on 15 and 16 June 2020. The event was supported by the ScreenSkills Animation and Children’s TV Skills Funds,  which invest in training thanks to contributions from the industry. It’s part of a ScreenSkills programme designed to support freelancers to upskill and stay connected, helping keep the industry resilient during the coronavirus pandemic.

Further information about the Young Audiences Content Fund

Financed by the UK Government, the Fund is seeking content that entertains, informs and reflects the experiences of children and young people growing up in the UK today. Production and development awards will contribute to the funding of programmes, shown on television and online platforms, that have public service broadcasting values in live-action and animation and across all genres.

For further information go to the BFI Young Audiences Content Fund.


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