Film event gives back to charity

Winners — The Judge’s Choice award winners, who filmed for CauseLife, posed with the judges following the event. Photo credit: Amy Marquez

Liberty University’s National Broadcast Society (NBS) created a film competition, called Forty-Eight, to raise money for four local charities and hosted a Black Tie Event on Feb. 24, where the films were judged.

Seven groups of three to five students had just 48 hours to create a promotional film for one of four charities: Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics Virginia, CauseLife and Interfaith Outreach Association.

Alicia Whitecavage, founder and project manager of Forty-Eight, said she put on her New Year’s Resolution list that she wanted to be more involved with the community, and she actually put her written words into action.

“I just thought that as students, we have projects for class and we do them to get a grade, and that’s well and good, but there’s something more,” Whitecavage said. “I wanted to take skills learned at Liberty and really do something for the community, like this event.”

Several students showed up dressed in suits and cocktail dresses to learn more about the local charities and enjoy the evening, which was filled with refreshments, a photo booth complete with props such as superhero masks and oversized sunglasses and, of course, to watch the films made by the students involved in Forty-Eight.

“All of the promotional films made are really good,” Whitecavage said. “The one for Special Olympics went viral in just 12 hours of it being posted to YouTube, and the Special Olympics in Texas and California are using it as their promotional video for the year as well.”

Matt Camire, the Piedmont regent director for the Special Olympics, said the video competition was a great way to spread the word about the organization and help people realize that their athletes do not have disabilities, but rather, “diffibilities.”

Rachel Kolb, the assistant director for CauseLife, said that Liberty University contacting them about doing the competition was “absolutely a God thing.”

“Just a week before we received the phone call from Liberty, we had a meeting where we talked about how what we really needed was some sort of video,” Kolb said. “When we got the phone call about this opportunity, it was such a blessing.”

According to Tasha Willett, cofounder and event planner of Forty-Eight, NBS wanted to hold a Forty-Eight competition for a while, and doing a project that simultaneously gave students experience while helping a charity seemed like the way to go.

“We just were thinking about it and decided, ‘Why not do a charity? If we are going to be Christians, let’s do this right,’” Willett said.

Laura Dunn, the program services coordinator for Habitat for Humanity, was thrilled to partner with Liberty University in the video challenge endeavor.

“There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to us,” Dunn said. “Many people don’t realize that we hold to Christian values, though, and being able to be associated with Liberty is a great way to help people understand what we are all about.”

Shawne Farmer, the executive director for Interfaith Outreach Association, agreed with Dunn and said that being chosen to participate in this competition was an amazing experience.

The videos were scored by a panel of three judges, and two prizes were awarded.

One group who filmed for Interfaith Outreach Association won the Crowd Favorite award, and one group who filmed for CauseLife won the Judge’s Choice award.

Prizes for the Judge’s Choice winners consisted of a signed copy of Johnnie Moore’s book “Honestly: Really Living What We Say We Believe” and the proceeds from registration fees. The prize for Crowd Favorite was a free Bespoke music track.

For more information on the National Broadcast Society or the Forty-Eight competition, contact Alicia Whitecavage at

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