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TFS’s Zac Schraeder Invited to Participate in Upcoming British Film Institute Panel on LGBTQIA+ Mental Health

Toronto Film School’s Zac Schraeder will be a featured panellist on an upcoming Conversation on Mental Health Within the LGBTQIA+ Community presented by the British Film Institute (BFI).  


The free live event will take place virtually on Wednesday, Aug. 11 at 2 p.m. (EDT) on the Aya Films Facebook page, featuring Wayne Dhesi, the founder of RUComingOut.com, as moderator and psychotherapist Rahim Thawer as Schraeder’s fellow panellist.  


Photo of Zac Schraeder

Film Production Program Advisor Zac Schraeder


“Film is such a great form of expression and a platform to bring forth and discuss important issues like queer mental health,” said Schraeder, Toronto Film School’s Film Production Program Advisor, who’s also currently studying towards his Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology at Yorkville University.


Presented as part of the BFI: Film Feels Hopeful series, the panel discussion will see Schraeder and Thawer tackle some of the important themes in the 2018 Brazilian drama, Sócrates (available to stream in Canada on Prime Video). 


Lauded by The Guardian as Brazilian-American director Alexandre Moratto’s ‘audacious and elegant debut,’ Sócrates is an award-winning, coming-of-age story that follows a 15-year-old boy living on the margins of São Paulo’s coast. After his mother’s sudden death, Sócrates tries desperately to overcome extreme poverty and homophobia while also remaining out of the clutches of social services and his estranged father.


Some of the themes Schaeder and Thawer are set to discuss include: the loss of a parent before you can come out; the difficulty of challenging the colonial systems of gender and heteronormativity; internalized shame; and a look at mental health within the LGBTQIA+ community, specifically for those members who are Black, Asian, Minority, Ethnic (BAME).


RSVP to attend the Conversation on Mental Health Within the LGBTQIA+ Community panel event here.