BAYCAT – Grantee

BAYCAT exists to end racial, gender, and economic inequity by creating powerful, authentic media while diversifying the creative industry. Through the education and employment of low-income youth, young people of color, and young women in the Bay Area—and by producing media for socially-minded clients—BAYCAT changes the stories that get shared with the world.

BAYCAT has multiple programs, each focusing on a different age of student. They have classes for youth aged 11-18, followed by paid internships for 18-25 year olds. They also have a paid internship for youth aged 15-18 to work on pro bono projects for other nonprofits. 

As a 13-year-old, the thought of becoming a professional filmmaker seemed like a dream to Iman. But the experience and opportunities he gained through BAYCAT Academy and BAYCAT Studio, prepared him to seize the opportunity of a lifetime.

To illustrate their impact, BAYCAT tells the story of a young 13 year old boy named Iman Rodney who joined the BAYCAT Academy, searching for a way to achieve his dream. He goes from participating in the youth program, to being hired part-time by BAYCAT, to joining their paid internship. After his hard work and commitment, his dream finally came true. Aged 21, Iman was hired by the SF Giants’ broadcast team as an intern. Two years later, he got hired full time as a videographer, eventually being promoted to a cinematographer a year later. To top it all off, at age 25, he wins an Emmy for a Giants documentary. One year later, he went on to win two Emmys.

Over the past 15 years, BAYCAT has educated over 4,250 youth and helped launch more than 225 careers in filmmaking and storytelling. In addition, 79% of BAYCAT’s graduates are POC, and 60% are women. Finally, 80% of BAYCAT’s graduates have been hired by major media, entertainment, and tech companies. 

SV2 is honored to partner with BAYCAT in advancing meaningful social impact. In addition to receiving unrestricted funding, BAYCAT tapped into the SV2 network to get access to pro-bono legal consulting from the Stanford Law School Clinic. We’re thrilled that Villy Wang, BAYCAT Executive Director, is speaking about Reimagining Meaningful Impact at our upcoming Fall Gathering!