We believe that socioeconomic development and conflict resolution are effective when the challenges and solutions are understood from the local perspective. High quality locally made documentary storytelling provides essential insights, for community members and policymakers, into sustainable paths to a more equitable and peaceful world.


COMMUNITY SUPPORTED FILM’s mission is to integrate training in documentary filmmaking, social issue storytelling and awareness building by:

Training storytellers from poor and developing communities in non-fiction filmmaking and assisting them with the development of their careers as filmmakers and video-journalists. Their capacity to disseminate objective and accurate information from the local perspective is essential for effective development and conflict resolution.

Producing engaging stories about important social and economic development issues in their communities. These stories nourish an understanding of the world that counteracts the relentless focus of western media on battlefronts, crises and disasters.

Building a bridge between the community of filmmakers, communities in development and an international community of concerned citizens. Locally made stories rooted in their realities allow for deeper community and institutional engagement in assessing and critiquing social and economic interventions and policies.


Inspired by the model of Community Supported Agriculture, COMMUNITY SUPPORTED FILM asks concerned citizens from around the world to invest directly in the production of high quality films with a locally-made perspective on social and economic development issues. In return their films nourish a complex understanding of human development that isn’t available in the mainstream media.


Michael Sheridan is a filmmaker, educator and activist whose documentary films address issues of social and economic development and the tipping point between order and chaos. For nearly 20 years Michael has engaged the public in stories from Asia, Africa and the Americas about people in poor and developing communities challenging the status quo and struggling to improve their lives.

In 1996 he co-founded Oxfam America’s documentary production and since then has worked to break new ground in the effective use of media to educate and change policy. He has taught documentary filmmaking for 15 years at the community and university level and from 2007-08 served as a Senior Fulbright Scholar in Indonesia.

Michael founded COMMUNITY SUPPORTED FILM in 2010, and also runs his filmmaking company SheridanWorks. COMMUNITY SUPPORTED FILM seeks to take the foreign out of foreign correspondence by providing intensive training in documentary filmmaking to storytellers and activists in conflicted and developing communities. Their stories are screened in public engagement campaigns to educate concerned citizens and policymakers about sustainable paths to a more equitable and peaceful world. He is currently working with 10 new immigrants and refugees in Boston on their production of films that will visualize their experiences and perspectives – New Immigrant and Refugee Visions.

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