The 2023 DOCTalks Festival & Symposium will be a hybrid event (in-person & Zoom) taking place in Fredericton, New Brunswick at the University of New Brunswick (Memorial Hall) from Tuesday June 13th to Thursday June 15 th.

Free admission for all event activities. Online registration for the 2023 DOCTalks Festival & Symposium will be through Eventbrite with links for each event provided below. In-person attendees can register at the door.

If seeking accommodations, please visit Fredericton Tourism: 


Theme: DOCTalks is excited to present three evening documentary film screenings & talks, and four afternoon panel discussions related to Community Engagement, Storytelling & Conversations. Our storytellers and guests will shine a light on how they engaged communities to tell stories and encourage conversations about relevant social issues.

Note: All times are in Atlantic Standard Time (AST).


7:00 pm AST – Welcome & Acknowledgements

DOCTalks President: Gary Weekes

7:10 pm to 9pm AST – Six Primrose

Six Primrose is an award-winning feature-length (77 minutes) documentary film which chronicles the dramatic impact that access to healthy food, a social network and empowering programs have on individual lives and communities as a whole.

The documentary takes us into a community where labels of single mother, new immigrant, disabled, addict and poor are left at the door. By tracing the life of community members, Six Primrose reveals the Dartmouth North Community Food Centre’s deep effect on the entire neighborhood. This is a community where lives are celebrated, personal strengths will be highlighted, people are welcome, and food is included in every engagement!

Following the film screening, our moderator Dennis Atchison ( The Dennis Report), will be joined in a conversation with the filmmakers, John Hillis and Hannah Minzloff, to discuss the film and issues related to community food centers.


Watch Trailer: 

Free Registration on Eventbrite: 


12:30 pm AST – Collaborating in a Community of Creators

David Borish, Ph.D, is an academic researcher and documentary producer and in this panel discussion, he will share his insights about collaborating with indigenous communities in Labrador to mobilize traditional knowledge.

For his doctorate research in Public Health & International Development, David led the HERD: Inuit Voices on Caribou initiative, which video-interviewed over 80 Inuit community perspectives about caribou across Labrador, analyzed this knowledge through both a qualitative and multimedia approach and engaged participants and other community members in a transparent research process that centred on community voices. Outcomes of this project include: co-creating and funding a short doc that screened at more than 15 international film festivals and producing a broadcast-length documentary film that is available on CBC Gem; writing multiple peer-reviewed articles about the connections between caribou and community well-being that were published in high impact journals; and developing curriculum resources around the film and research for integration into K-12 education in Nunatsiavut.

Note: This panel discussion is part of the 2023 DOC Atlantic Conversations Series presented in June 2023 by the Documentary Organization of Canada Atlantic Chapter, Lunenburg DOC Festival and DOCTalks Festival & Symposium.



Free Registration on Eventbrite:

2:30 to 4:00 pm – Digital Storytelling Project

In a world where there is a growing gulf between younger and older generations, the Digital Storytelling Project seeks to connect the two through community engagement, stories and conversations.

Dr Clive Baldwin, Professor of Social Work, and Dr Linda Caissie, Associate Professor of Gerontology, both of St Thomas University, oversee a digital storytelling project, which connects university students with older adults who then work collaboratively to create digital stories that can be shared publicly or privately with family and friends. Clive and Linda will be available to discuss the Digital Storytelling Project after the screenings. Some of the short film stories to be screened and discussed include:

Alvin and Hazel Ashfield love watching documentaries. Their digital story is designed around how they met, their marriage, and their daily lives as retirees.

Gertie Murray is from Chipman, New Brunswick and her digital story highlights how music has been handed down from one generation to another through her family. Music has been and continues to be a big part of Gerties life!

Carol Young is known as Christmas Carol. In her digital story, Carol reminisces on the many chapters of her life story and the wonderful memories she and her family shared together over the years. She carries her mother’s motto – take things one day at a time – as a valuable life lesson for overcoming challenging times in life.

Dr. Baldwin’s Website:

Free Registration on Eventbrite:

7:00 to 9: 00 pm AST – SAYING GOODBYE- Preparing for Death

With COVID and an aging population, death has become a constant fear and a reality of life, so the documentary SAYING GOODBYE – Preparing for Death is a timely film about death and dying.

We know in the depths of our being, death will come – either through diagnosis or from a sudden accident. As difficult as it is, making decisions now about what we want when facing the inevitable is a kindness to yourself and your loved ones. Through stories from professionals who have spent their careers at the bedside, SAYING GOOBYE opens the door to good conversations about what is possible as we pass from this life, such as, What is a conscious death and could you have one?

Following the film screening we will be joined in conversation with the film director, Johanna Lunn, and the co-founders Karen Lake, RN and Anne Marie Hartford of Death Information Education (DIE), which host Fredericton’s Death Cafe and other educational events.


Watch Trailer:

Free Registration on Eventbrite:


12:30 to 2:00 pm AST – Loyalist Connection Project

The Loyalist Connections Creative Society is committed to building self-esteem and identity within Black communities by educating and documenting the historic resourcefulness and entrepreneurial spirit of our ancestors, so as to dispel racist historical narratives and address anti-racism.

Its vision is to leverage big data and multimedia resources to capture and share first-voice historical narratives that highlight the unique nature and conditions of the Black and African Nova Scotian Experience. With on-camera interviews and knowledge-based documentary media content (i.e. podcasts) they strive to equip the next generation with essential skills and development opportunities, with a particular focus on giving a voice to those who have been historically overlooked.

Laurice Gabriel Downey, Graham Nickerson, Shawn Smith and others associated with the Loyalist Connections Creative Society will be on hand to discuss their knowledge documentation and dissemination initiative.


Instagram: Loyalist Connections Podcast

Free Registration on Eventbrite:

2:30 to 4pm AST – CHELSEA EATS: Universal Basic Income Project

The COVID pandemic sent the City of Chelsea Massachusetts spiraling into chaos and to address incomes dropping to zero overnight, they initiated CHELSEA EATS, the largest basic income pilot project in American history.

Raising the Floor is a documentary film (30 minutes in length) that explores how City leaders and community members came together in a desperate moment with a simple but inspired idea – give people money and let them spend it however they see fit. Thus began CHELSEA EATS, a basic income program that gave 2,000 individuals and families direct payments up to $400 per month for food and essentials. The research findings from this basic income pilot project offer lessons and make a compelling case for public policies that can reduce poverty and inequality in post-pandemic America.

During this panel we will watch Raising the Floor and our moderator Dennis Atchison ( The Dennis Report) will be joined in a conversation about universal basic income with the film director, Sabrina Avilés, and Senator Kim Pate whose National Framework for a Guaranteed Livable Basic Income Act ( Bill S-233) is moving through the Canadian Senate.


Watch Trailer:

Free Registration:

NOTE: Due to film streaming restrictions the film can only be seen IN-PERSON. Online attendees can participate in the panel discussion after the 30 minute screening.

The Life & Times of James Charles Dumaresq 

Protecting and preserving Canada’s built heritage is not only historically important, but older buildings are also valuable community assets from a social, cultural, economic, and climate change perspective.

Fredericton Heritage Trust has been protecting and preserving historically important buildings from the wrecking ball since 1972, when it engaged with the community to save historical sections of Queen Street from a large retail development. Some 50 years later the Trust continues to engage and educate the public about the importance of Fredericton’s built heritage. To that end, it collaborated on the documentary media project, BUILDING ART The Life & Times of James Charles Dumaresq, about an architect whose buildings in Fredericton include: New Brunswick Legislature, Charlotte Street School (now an art centre), St. Paul’s United Church, York Street School (now a condominium), Clark Building (now retail & offices), Fitzrandolph Building (now offices), and St. Anthony’s Catholic Church (located on the northside).

Join Jeremy Mouat, President of Fredericton Heritage Trust, along with the film producer Lloyd Salomone, film participant and retired architect Ian Robertson, and other community members – property owners, film crew & participants, archivists, funders – that collaborated on the BUILDING ART documentary, as they screen a few building episodes and discuss the importance of heritage protection and preservation.


Watch the Trailer:

Free Registration:


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