Igniting Compassion - Viddy Awards

The Center for Health Affairs

Cleveland, Ohio

Igniting Compassion

Client: The Center for Health Affairs
Category: Non-Broadcast | Long Form Videos > 3 Minutes | 106. Documentary
About Project

The documentary Igniting Compassion was created to shine a light on the medical stigma surrounding addiction and spark conversation about the opioid crisis. The film features stories of people with lived experience of not only loss and pain but also hope, recovery and treatment success. By taking a look into the lives of Cleveland, Ohio area residents impacted by polysubstance use and the opioid crisis, viewers experience personal stories and gain a new understanding of and compassion for people who use drugs or are living with substance use disorders (SUDs).

As the opioid epidemic continues to devastate communities nationwide and here in Northeast Ohio, it is more important than ever to listen to and understand those personally affected. It is our goal for this project to be a catalyst for positive change and encourage viewers to open their hearts to individuals experiencing SUDs and ultimately have a more complete view of the opioid crisis and those impacted.

The project required months of preparation and dedicated persistence to gently navigate the topic of addiction and present it in a way that is respectful to the individuals and their stories. The storytellers hail from varied backgrounds and carry unique perspectives that allow the viewer to contemplate medical stigma associated with substance use and encourage critical conversations and creative solutions needed to mitigate the ongoing epidemic. Igniting Compassion reminds viewers that patients deserve the same care and level of humanity and treatment, no matter what their background and medical history includes.


Written & Produced by Alec Hillyer, Carrie Lang and Amy Terry
Filmed & Edited by Alec Hillyer