Bellingham Human Rights Film Festival

22nd Annual

2023 Update:
The BHRFF is co-presenting the PBS Independent Lens films (Jan, Feb, April, May) at the Pickford Film Center. Showings are free and at 1pm, followed by discussions. See the 2023 Festival Presentations page for the film descriptions and schedule, and check back for further 2023 updates!

Through an annual film festival BHRFF supports independent filmmakers, fosters dialogue and promotes action. For over twenty years, volunteer committee members have selected scores of insightful and moving films they hope will encourage the community to explore and engage with critical issues. Films are followed by facilitated discussion, some led by the filmmakers themselves.

In the past, we have acquired most of our festival films for continuous availability in the community. They are now in the Bellingham Public Library (BPL), Wilson Library at Western Washington University (WWU), or Whatcom Community College Library (WCC), accessible with a Bellingham Public Library card. Click on the "Film Archive" tab above to find a full list of films and which library they are in, as well as organizations you can contact to take action on the issues presented in the films. 

The Bellingham Public Library has finally accepted our 2020 festival film donations. Check our “FILM ARCHIVE” tab for the films we have been able to place there, and which you can now check out for viewing.

Mayor's Arts Award
BHRFF was one of 2015's recipients of the annual Mayor's Arts Awards.  The award recognizes "the film festival and the outlet it provides to filmmakers in addressing challenging issues".

BHRFF Recognition
Our festival has been listed in an article on the Audience Awards website as one of nine "Film Festivals That Are Making A Difference" in the U.S. 

We were honored by the community as shown in the 2019 October issue of “Bellingham Alive!” Magazine’s annual “Best of the Northwest” readers’ poll. We received third place for “Best Festival”.