The Singapore Mental Health Study 2016 reported that the majority of people with a mental disorder did not seek any professional help, with the reasons largely attributed “to inability to recognise the symptoms of a mental illness, and concerns regarding the stigma associated with mental illnesses.” 

The silent struggles have to be given a voice.

The more stories that we can shed light on, the more we can work together to build a compassionate, inclusive society.

Make a short film on mental health/dementia and ignite change through your story.

This competition features workshops with film industry experts to provide the ins and outs of filmmaking and mental health/dementia organisations to provide accurate and precise information about Singapore’s mental health landscape.

Your short film should feature at least one of the topics covered by the mental health/dementia organisations.

The 2021 winning short film will be screened at the next Singapore Mental Health Film Festival in May 2021. 

Additionally, it will be screened at the New York City Mental Health Film Festival (New York, USA) and Rendezvous with Madness Film Festival (Toronto, Canada). 

All short film entries will automatically be submitted to the National Youth Film Awards 2022 by *SCAPE (Singapore). 

Click here to for the 2021 competition details!

Singapore Mental Health Film Festival

Singapore Mental Health Film Festival Limited (SMHFF) is a Singapore-based and registered non-profit organisation. 

SMHFF’s vision is to provide an inclusive and safe platform for stories about recovery and resilience.

Safe Space

SMHFF is committed to providing an open and safe space where we welcome people of all backgrounds and abilities to participate in empowering, non-judgemental and non-threatening discussions. This also means that we commit to respecting the privacy of others by maintaining confidentiality and allowing others to speak for themselves.


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Beneficiary Name: Singapore Mental Health Film Festival Limited

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Bank Account Number: 0129030554

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What are the Terms and Conditions of this Competition?

Please refer to: for the full SMHFF Short Film Youth Competition terms and conditions.

Would there be a budget allocated for each team if the proposed idea is selected for production?

There is no budget allocated. Each individual or teams who are keen to participate in this competition will need to look for their resources in terms of producing the film, hiring of actors and other logistic that the individual/ group think they may require.

I didn’t receive an acknowledgement email after registering. Did the Festival receive my application?

Currently, the registration platform doesn’t allow us to send acknowledgement emails. However, if you got to the final page that informs you that we have received your application and you’ll be contacted by Dec 7, we have received it!

Will the Festival be screening our films outside of the Premiere?

There might be a possibility that the Festival will utilise your film for outreach efforts, on both online and physical events. Additionally, the Festival might invite you as a speaker to share your experience on creating a film for the competition.

What films will be screened during the SMHFF Short Film Youth Competition Premiere in April/May?

Only the top 10 finalists’ films will be screened during the Premiere. However, films submitted into this competition should not be screened or submitted to other platforms or festivals prior to the Premiere. 

Are we commissioned to create the film?

Yes. Because each film has to focus on at least one of the five mental health/dementia topics, it should be created for the Competition.  Alongside the film creation, we hope that the reason behind their entry is geared towards bringing a greater sense of awareness towards the topic of mental health/ dementia.

Winning films for the 2021 competition will be awarded cash prizes as well as the chance to be screened overseas at another two other film festivals. But we hope that you can see that as an encouragement and token for your efforts because the larger goal of the festival is really to get people thinking and having conversations about mental health/dementia.

For more information about the competition visit:

Can I be a team member of two different groups that have sent two different proposals for the application process?

No. All participants will only be allowed one registration application, either as an individual or as part of a group.

Does an individual submission mean I must do everything myself?

Individual means you don’t work with a group to conceptualise and execute the idea. You can work with actors but if they aren’t the ones who helped in the conceptualisation and execution of the proposal, then they’re not considered part of the team.

For the workshops, must everyone in the team attend?

Yes, every participant from the Team is required to attend. However, due to the overwhelming entries this year, Teams with 5 and more members will be issued only TWO Zoom logins. Individuals and Teams with 4 and less members will be issued only ONE Zoom login. Hence, Teams would need to find a safe space(s) for members to use one/two devices to enter the workshops.

Where would the workshops be held?

In light of the pandemic, workshops will all be held online via Zoom. Selected participants will be given the Zoom links of their chosen sessions by December 7, 2020.

Can I submit a film that has already been created?

Films created should be geared towards the topics selected for the competition year of the Singapore Mental Health Film Festival Youth Competition. 

The 2021 Youth Competition topics are: 

  1. Cyber-Bullying & Trauma
  2. Life Transitions
  3. Young Caregivers
  4. Recovery
  5. Suicide Prevention

Films submitted should not have been screened or submitted to other platforms or festivals prior to SMHFF Youth Competition Premiere, which usually happens annually in April/May.

Are animated films allowed?

Yes, they are.

Is there a maximum number of persons for team submissions?

Yes, the team size should not exceed more than 10 persons.

Who will be contacted on December 7, 2020?

Only eligible individuals/groups who have registered for the competition will be contacted by December 7, 2020. 

Register for the competition here.

What do you mean by eligible?

Because we want to create the best learning and fair environment for all youths who are interested to submit a film to the festival, they will need to submit a synopsis or idea.

The reason for that is also because the selection basis for the competition is largely based on a synopsis or idea that they have. Hence we would really love to give opportunities to the ones who have given some thought about what is it about the topic of mental health that they want to talk about and how they can translate that message into film. 

Ask us a question!

If your question that hasn’t been answered in the FAQs, please send us a message!