Netflix partners with AFTRS to launch Indigenous scholarship fund

Romaine Moreton and Tanya Hosch.

Netflix will invest more than $500,000 across two years into training initiatives designed to support First Nations communities and storytellers.

To be administered by AFTRS, the Netflix Indigenous Scholarship Fund has been created to offer both longer-term support and short-term opportunities for practitioners in the screen and broadcast industry, particularly for those working below the line.

AFTRS’ administration of the scholarship will be guided by the principles of the school’s First Nations strategy, led by the director of First Nations and outreach, Dr Romaine Moreton.

Moreton said the fund was a great opportunity for AFTRS and Netflix to work with First Nations communities to support and develop their media-making capacities.

“[The fund] will create pathways into industry, driven by First Nations values that are self-determining, advance Indigenous cultural revitalisation practices and promote storytelling autonomy,” she said.

AFTRS will convene a selection panel chaired by AFTRS council member Tanya Hosch, which will include representatives from Netflix and Indigenous leaders from several educational institutions, to determine the range and number of scholarships over the two-year period.

Hosch said the school “couldn’t be more excited” to partner with Netflix on the fund.

“Guided by the expertise of AFTRS First Nations leaders, this very generous scholarship fund from Netflix has the potential to transform both individual careers and improve the inclusion and cultural capacity of our industry,” she said.

“The offering of scholarships, fellowships and training will also give First Nations peoples the option of learning on country and create opportunities for AFTRS to respond to the challenges of designing new and innovative ways of teaching, learning, and training with and within First Nations communities.”