LGBTQQ Youth Learn to Tell Own Story Through Film

Taking the time to examine the familiar through the eye of a film lens can sometimes reveal the unexpected. Recently, BAYCAT guided the young adult interns of Lavender Youth Recreation & Information Center (LYRIC), through this process as the first-time filmmakers took on the challenge of telling their own story.

Liz teaching camera work.“My experience with BAYCAT allowed me to explore my interest with cinematography in a new and creative way,” said participant Jassmyne. “Having to create my own work and see others in post-production with the same material was also very inspirational. Especially in an environment where everyone was so supportive and knowledgeable on what they were teaching.”

BAYCAT staff mobilized for a 3-day workshop-on-wheels, helping the youth of LYRIC create their own promotional highlighting the support and services the nonprofit has available for LGBTQQ youth. After facilitating training and planning the shoot on day 1, the crew of LYRIC youth broke into their production roles like director, cinematographer, and talent, to film a short promo video for the organization to use with recruitment and fundraising. Day 2

It was a great experience for both organizations.

LYRIC student's drawing“I really appreciated how [BAYCAT] didn’t try to take control of what we were doing, you all just let us do what we felt was right. I also appreciate how you all took the time to teach us. It was really fun working with all of you guys. You all kept me laughing and you were all pretty nice. I hope to work with you all again” said LYRIC intern Jennifer.

BAYCAT worked with the nonprofit’s interns to film a video about the internship program, which just premiered at LYRIC’s 27th Annual Open House. The event may have ended, but the video is still a great one to watch. Check it out here:


SFPUC Music Video

SFPUC and BAYCAT Team Up on Music Video

It’s not everyday that you get to rap about POO. But after today, you just might.

Sewer Rap A Day Without Me SFPUC Music VideoThe San Francisco Public Utilities Commission and BAYCAT recently unveiled “You Can’t Live a Day Without Me,” the latest part of an effort to reach out to younger San Franciscans and educate them about San Francisco’s aging sewer system and the Sewer System Improvement Program. This isn’t the easiest subject to get kids (or adults) excited about, so the SFPUC got creative with their approach. Written and performed by Desmond Hatter, a former SFPUC intern, the tongue-in-cheek rap video features lyrics like “no one takes more crap than we do,” and “your #1 is our #2,” and has gained much attention.

“The SFPUC is using the power of lyrics and music to connect with young people. We want more youth to be engaged with our program to upgrade our aging sewer system and become better environmental stewards,” said General Manager Harlan L. Kelly, Jr. in a statement.

Since the video’s premiere last week, “You Can’t Live a Day Without Me,” has climbed to over 10,000 views. In case you missed all the press on TV, radio, and the web, catch up with this short San Francisco Examiner piece. Watch for cameos by notables like former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, and retired 49ers star player Ronnie Lott, plus some SFPUC staff who worked on their own time as the amazing extras for the video’s underground club scene.

SFPUC Music Video A Day Without Me Ronnie Lott Cameo

Watch for a cameo from retired 49ers great Ronnie Lott.

As talk of creating a music video began to circulate, Kalle Burton, a former BAYCAT student and then SFPUC intern, knew just who to suggest. The SFPUC made a conscious choice to work with community-minded production company BAYCAT, and leverage this project not only as a PR tool to reach young people, but also to provide a learning opportunity for young digital media producers. Led by BAYCAT STUDIO’s Ariel Dovas, BAYCAT was able to employ 8 young adult internship graduates on the project. To find out more on how to create professional promotional material, while benefiting the community, contact BAYCAT STUDIO.


Super Bowl 50 Fund

Getting in the Game with the Super Bowl’s 50 Fund

BAYCAT STUDIO’s newest client is a real playmaker! The 50 Fund, the signature philanthropic initiative of Super Bowl 50, has begun, and BAYCAT is documenting it all. Through its Playmaker grants, the 50 Fund is awarding $10,000 to a Bay Area nonprofit each week leading up to Super Bowl 50. Now in our fifth week, NBC recently profiled BAYCAT’s journey to the Super Bowl. Don’t miss these touching stories of people working to make our community stronger — follow us on Facebook and Twitter to see a newly announced Playmaker each week.

The 50 Fund is our latest BAYCAT STUDIO Client. You can learn more about hiring BAYCAT STUDIO for your video, multi-media, marketing, communications, and PR needs by visiting our STUDIO page. Or consider making a deeper impact as a Clonor (Client + Donor). To learn more about being a top 10 Clonor, email us here.

BAYCAT is proud to partner with the 50 Fund to tell these stories, and the process has only just begun. The Fund has a rolling deadline, focusing on three areas: youth development, community investment and sustainable environments. Do you know a potential Playmaker? Find out more about this grant here.

Shooter & Editor

BAYCAT is in search for a Shooter & Editor who is a values-driven individual with a strong commitment to our mission, and the desire to grow professionally. Also is someone who is creative and detailed-minded, customer-service oriented, a team player, and a quick learner who can take direction well.


Reporting to the Studio and Internship Manager, the Shooter & Editor is responsible for:

  • Shooting select BAYCAT studio projects.
  • Managing the post-production of select BAYCAT video projects, including hands-on editing, as well as incorporating music, motion graphics, and titles.


  • Prioritize and produce project work in a timely manner according to project deadlines.
  • Manage, organize and archive project media according to BAYCAT’s standards and practices.
  • Act as Director of Photography for select video projects, including participating in client meetings and presentations, interpreting client needs and incorporating feedback.
  • Work with project teams and production crew that include shooters, graphics designers, PA’s, multimedia contractors, community members and Studio BAYCAT interns.


  • 5 years or more of successful and progressively responsible video production experience.
  • Highly proficient in DSLR video production equipment and workflow (preferably a C100).
  • Knowledgeable in interview and documentary lighting setups and execution.
  • Experience editing with Adobe Premiere Pro.
  • A natural storyteller, able to quickly construct a compelling narrative from available footage.
  • Detailed-minded with the ability to prioritize and self-start.
  • A good problem solver, able to do a lot with a little.
  • Excellent time management skills.
  • Displays skills to create content with high production value.
  • Team player, who excels in nourishing collaborative processes.
  • Commitment to personal and professional growth, and aligned with BAYCAT’s core values.
  • Can commit to 25-30 hours a week.
  • Passionate!!


  • Physical ability to travel throughout San Francisco, and greater Bay Area.
  • Motion graphics skills


Please send cover letter, resume and URLs of your own work electronically to This position is currently open and we need to fill as soon as possible.

No phone calls please. Only applicants who send resumes, cover letters and work examples will be considered.


Salary will commensurate with experience plus competitive benefits package that includes health, dental, vision, flexible spending account (FSA), life insurance, and 403(b) retirement plan.

Equal Opportunity Employer. All women, people of color, LGBTQ-identified candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

Join BAYCAT Youth at the Bay Area Int’l Children’s Film Festival

BAYCAT Youth will speak on their experience as young media makers

This year BAICFF has invited BAYCAT youth as featured speakers for both days as part of their, “Young Filmmakers Showcase!”  It’s a FAMILY AFFAIR!  Join us, our youth, and some of our Board members!

BAYCAT youth, Stella, Hugo and Miguel are presenting Stella’s short documentary film on Saturday (5-6pm), and music video students, Angela, Omari and Zevonte, are presenting their music videos on Sunday (5-6pm).

The Festival offers families a cinematic view of the world’s varied cultures and traditions through short films, and has lots of optional workshops for youth as well. This event is all day Saturday and Sunday, and tickets include full day passes that let you into the Festival and activities of the Chabot Space and Science Center.

A Song to Inspire Success

“I love BAYCAT because it makes me feel like I am going to be somebody one day.”

-Jazzeia Edwards, 15, Youth Music Producer

Applause.  Affirmation.  Awe. That’s what Jazzy and the other 25 kids between 11 to 17 years old felt during BAYCAT’S world premiere Open House, where our young filmmakers and music producers premiered the 31st episode of the award-winning tv series, Zoom In: State of Our Minds.

(Check the entire episode here.)

In many ways, we witnessed transformations at Open House – of creativity, curiosity, and courage blooming into original documentaries and songs; of stories of personal struggle becoming messages of inspiration and hope; of a community’s support cultivating real opportunities for young people.

If you want to make it possible to keep helping underserved kids like Jazzy, please make a tax-deductible donation today and share this email with your friends and on your social channels.


Every Story Matters: BAYCAT’s Impact Goes Beyond Making Media

You never know what event will change your life, forever. For Stella, that was walking through the doors at BAYCAT. Like many teens, Stella would head home after school and watch TV, but never imagined being the storyteller. BAYCAT was able to show her something different.

baycat youth, media production

For Stella, learning storytelling at BAYCAT was a bridge to understanding her own journey.

Over the last three years at BAYCAT, Stella has found her voice through filmmaking and the digital media arts. Learning to tell the stories of others helped Stella understand her own journey: learning to manage her OCD. Exploring the topic through media gave her the courage to share her struggle with her parents, and an autobiographical documentary short Stella wrote and directed will be premiered in Zoom In 31: State of Our Minds on December 4th. Through her film, Stella wants other young people to know that they are not alone, and that there is always hope.

Supporting BAYCAT isn’t just about making a donation, but it is about making a difference in the lives of young people. Stories like Stella’s can’t be told without your help. We hope you join us in our mission to ensure that every kid left out by the digital divide has the opportunity to find their voice at BAYCAT.

Come in person to applaud and to meet Stella, or bring other youth who would be inspired by her story! And if you can’t make it in person, you can still join us via our online livestream of the show!

For more stories on youth like Stella, SIGN UP NOW to subscribe to our e-newsletter. You can stay up to date on all of our new projects, partners, student stories, and programs.

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BAYCAT to Host Fall Open House & Premiere Zoom In 31 – December 4th!

It’s finally time!! BAYCAT will be hosting our Fall Open House next Thursday, DECEMBER 4th at 6p.m.! As we all begin our holiday-season celebrations, we at BAYCAT want to celebrate our young media producers, our community partners, and our 10 years (and running) of educating, empowering, and entertaining. And we’ve got some exciting new things to share with you!

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Young music producer & BAYCAT Academy student, Angela, films a music video for State of Our Minds, the 31st episode of BAYCAT’s award-winning television series, Zoom In.

Our youth have been hard at work these past few months writing, planning, producing, directing, editing, and recording their original songs and short films for the 31st episode of our award-winning television series, Zoom In. This fall, our young media producers explore the topic of mental wellbeing. Some have been creating documentaries about social pressure, like Angelica and Bella, who in “Expanded Minds” talk about stress at school and how it affects them everyday. Our music producers have been writing songs about persevering through times of struggle, with original tracks like “Mood Swings” and “State of Our Minds.” And finally, our young storytellers will allow us a glimpse into their personal experiences of hardship and coping, with Zette sharing the story of her recent move from Japan to San Francisco in “Between Here & There”; and, Stella will premiere her short autobiographical documentary, “Tangles,” in which she opens up about her struggle with OCD.

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BAYCAT Academy Youth Music Producer, Precious, films a music video for State of Our Minds, the 31st episode of BAYCAT Academy’s award-winning television series, Zoom In.


We’ll also be sharing our latest BAYCAT Studio and Pathways Internship news, and will be screening our intern-directed and -produced, “What About Water” – a short documentary created in partnership with our latest clonor, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. Through this project, we learned how the Bayview Hunters Point community makes the most out of its water, and what we all can do to conserve water in this California drought.


So come join us!! We can’t wait to see you there. And if you can’t make it in person, you can still join us via our online livestream of the show!


And, stay up to date on all of our new projects, partners, and programs! SIGN UP NOW to subscribe to our e-newsletter!

Heroic Celebration: BAYCAT Original Shorts to be Featured at MY HERO Film Fest!

Our BAYCAT Academy youth media producers are enjoying continued success on the festival circuit! We are proud to announce that three our youths’ films have won awards and will be featured at the MY HERO Film Festival this Saturday, November 22nd!

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A BAYCAT Academy youth music producer raps at Candlestick Park for an original track, “Just Maybe”.

BAYCAT Academy’s music video, Just Maybe, directed and edited by young filmmaker Anthony Rivas to an original track written, recorded, and produced by BAYCAT youth music producers, has won 3rd Place in the Student/Mentor Music Video category! Originally produced for Zoom In Episode 29: Outside Your Door, the film was created in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service. Challenged to express how they feel about the outdoors, the youth shared their complex perspectives on whether the outdoors are always a safe space for urban youth.


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BAYCAT Academy young filmmaker, Maceo ‘Moony’ Mayorga plays The Perfect Mayor

The Perfect Mayor, which has also recently won 2nd Place at the 2014 BAYMN Film Festival and was selected for the 2014 Project YouthView Film Festival, has garnered 3rd Place in the High School Experimental category at the MY HERO Film Fest! Written and directed by Advanced Filmmaking student Ginger Chen, the film takes a fun look at who the perfect San Francisco mayor would be, if he or she could be everything that her young constituents would want her to be.


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Alia in a scene of her short autobiographical film, The Beach: My Diary

And last but not least, Alia Gabrielle’s moving autobiographical short, The Beach: My Diary, has won 3rd Place in the Student/Mentor category at MY HERO! Alia’s film was also officially selected for the I Hella Love Shorts Film Festival this past September, and will be featured exclusively online this December 4th – 14th as part of the International Black Women’s Film Festival. In telling her story, Alia shares why the beach is so meaningful to her, and how it helps connect her with her family.


Congratulations to our youth! Thanks for being our heroes and inspiring us to work for positive change. Can’t wait to see what new stories the youth are telling this fall? Come to our Open House at BAYCAT on December 4th for the world premiere of Zoom In 31: State of Our Minds, or join us via our livestream!

WATCH, SHARE: NEW RELEASE! BAYCAT Pathways Interns ask, “What About Water”?

What About Water director Alyssa Hailemariam on set

What About Water director Alyssa Hailemariam on set

We’re in a drought. While that’s been a big issue and concern for Californians this year, BAYCAT seized the opportunity to learn more about what we can do about it.

This past summer, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission funded a Summer Learning Grant for our Pathways Interns. The goal: to learn more about our Bayview Hunters Point community’s perceptions about water, how the Bayview makes the most of our vital resources, and what we all can do to conserve water everyday.

Our 2014 interns have just wrapped producing, directing, and editing the new documentary, entitled “What About Water”! WATCH the film on our Vimeo page now, and SHARE with your friends!