History & Mission

Reel Works provides free filmmaking programs for NYC Youth.  Using a unique, one-on-one mentoring model, we challenge at-risk youth to tell their stories and have their voices heard.  In turn, they build vital skills of literacy, leadership and self-confidence to create productive futures.


Reel Works is one of the leading digital media educators in the United States. We are the only filmmaking program that matches teens 1:1 with professional filmmaker-mentors to tell their stories and have their voices heard.  It’s a powerful combination that changes young lives while creating startling and original films that have been seen by over 9 million viewers since our founding in 2001. What began as a single workshop of 17 students at the Prospect Park YMCA in Park Slope, Brooklyn has grown to provide free after school and in-school programs give a voice to over 500 youth citywide.  Reel Works programs are designed to engage youth through intensive in-school or after-school filmmaking workshops and to provide a safe community and a continuum of learning opportunities that extend from middle school to high school to college and beyond.  All our workshops are standards-based, rigorous and centered on literacy, storytelling, hands-on learning and a commitment to excellence. Reel Works has a well-earned reputation for innovation and quality:

More than anything, Reel Works is a community active learners where young people and adult mentors meet, collaborate and inspire one another to succeed.

Featured Video

The Future Speaks Now
The Future Speaks Now by Lucas Hoye

The Future Speaks Now

In the wake of Donald Trump’s presidency, this film explores the viewpoints of teenagers – too young to vote in the recent election – voicing their opinions on his policies and what an ideal leader looks like.

Fall Lab 2016
Society & Politics


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