Backyard Wilderness is a forty-minute Giant Screen film and multi-platform educational initiative about the great web of life that surrounds and sustains us, but which we have forgotten how to see. Set in and around a typical home and neighborhood pond, it is an entertaining and poignant story that reveals with breathtaking imagery the wonders of wildlife in our own backyards. Our film is distributed by SK Films and will be shown to audiences at science centers and museums around the world.

This film is accompanied by a comprehensive, multi-platform educational effort that includes a web-based curriculum and activity guide for classrooms. Our program aims to inspire students and educate them on the issues of conservation, biodiversity, climate change, the water cycle, and the benefits of exposure to nature. There will also be digital tools for interactive learning including: live-action animal-cams that allow viewers to follow the comings and goings of their backyard neighbors in real time, a citizen science app, a conservation themed game for mobile devices, and an educational virtual reality experience.

Backyard Wilderness is the creation of award winning filmmakers Susan Todd and Andrew Young, founders of Archipelago Films and its nonprofit partner Arise Media, a 501(c)(3) organization. The team has produced and directed over twenty documentary films, earning an Academy Award nomination, two Emmy Awards, seven Emmy nominations, five awards at the Sundance Film Festival, including the Grand Jury Prize, and numerous prizes at international film festivals.

We are still actively seeking fundraising.

What we still need:

Completion Funding… $880,000

3D Conversion & Deliverables... $950,000

Educational Outreach... $500,000

Total to Raise: $2,330,000

What we have received:

Jewish Communal Fund… $2,150,000

Pew Charitable Trusts… $200,000

  Private Individuals / Friends… $22,000

Total Received... $2,372,000


When you donate to Arise Media, your name isn’t on a brick on the wall; it’s on the Giant Screen.

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