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'Sus-theeram Kadhakal'

Coastal regions of Kerala will be vulnerable to the current and projected courses of changing climate. An estimated 3.5 to 34.6 inches increase in sea level between 1990 and 2100 would result in salinity intrusion to coastal groundwater, endangering wetlands and coastal communities. 

We are now inviting entries for Sustheeram Kadhakal - a storytelling contest for young passionate individuals/groups to narrate and propose environmental and just-based solutions to the coastal challenges in the form of a photo story or short documentary/story. The contest is being done as part of the Coastal Champions program by the SUSTERA Foundation.

Let your creativity unleash and break social barriers. The video/photo story must capture potential solutions for coastal challenges. 

Frequent floods, cyclones, and tidal surges can make coastal regions hazardous. As a result, the livelihoods of coastal communities become more vulnerable. Climate justice identifies the climate crisis as a social and political issue apart from an environmental one. It recognizes that different communities feel the effects of the climate crisis differently. This particular theme can be portrayed as follows:

We intend to provide opportunities for budding filmmakers and storytellers through the contest. And most importantly, we want to bring innovations and coastal solutions to the forefront.


Climate Justice



Fishing in the Ocean



Innovative livelihood models/ alternative livelihood/sustainable livelihood solutions for coastal communities and residents.

Climate Protest


Climate Justice

Cover campaigns or efforts by individuals/ groups/organizations to tackle climate justice and climate migration issues in Coastal Kerala




Stories of innovation in sustainable tourism in coastal Kerala. Stories of innovative eco-restoration/ conservation practices/ sustainable traditional practices in Coastal Kerala


Short documentary/ Narrative video

  • The video should be less than 3 minutes

  • The video can be shot on a phone/professional camera in Landscape mode

  • The description should be 150 to 300 words

Who can apply

How to apply

How to apply

  • Click on the apply icon at the bottom of this page, this will redirect you to a google form

  • Answer the questions accordingly

  • Upload the document with the photos and description in the order of the storyline.

  • e.g. If there are 6 photos, number each photo chronologically and mention the description for each photo in the document with a corresponding number of the photo.

Female Photographer
  • Minimum of 6 photos (max 8) 

  • Series of photos each with a story/narration 

  • Each photo should have a description of 50 to 100 words

Photo story

Application closed!

  • Individual or team of maximum 5 members,  between the ages 18 and 35

  • Click on the apply icon at the bottom of this page, this will redirect you to a google form

  • Answer the questions accordingly

  • Upload the short documentary/narrative video to your drive

  • Provide access to the video drive  link to


Scoring process

  • Out of all the entries received, a jury will select 10 applications from each category. Jury selection will be based on 

    • Content (weightage-70 percent)

    • Presentation (weightage- 30 percent)

  • Selected 15 entries will then be monitored for social media engagement

    • Selected videos(10)  and photo documentaries (5) will be posted on our social media handles with respective credits and tags (Instagram- sustera_org, Facebook-SUSTERA FOUNDATION) 

    • Participants will have to make sure of maximum engagement for their content posted.


  • 2 best entries in the video category will receive a cash award of INR 10,000/- each

  • 2 best entries in the photo story category will receive a cash award of INR 5000/- each

  • Winning entries will be posted on our website, YouTube and Linkedin handle for analyzing social media engagement. All applications will be given due credits while posting on social media.

Important dates 

  • Applications will be open from the 18th of August 2022

  • Last date to apply 7th of September 2022

The selection of final entries will be based on

  • Weightage for jury response: 80%

  • Weightage for social media engagement: 20%

Rules and regulations

  • The submissions need to be original work. Plagiarized content will be disqualified.

  • Guidelines for each category need to be fulfilled.


*Please keep in mind the ongoing weather conditions and not prone yourself to any dangerous situations.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What information should I include in the description of the entry?

A. The description should be what the story is about, the area, and the prevailing solutions or the solutions you suggest for the coastal challenges identified. 

2. Will the video be judged on the basis of its video/photo resolution?

A. No. We expect decent quality for the entries but the content will be judged based on other parameters like creativity, innovation, coherence, and efficiency in communicating the theme. 

3. Can I expect any feedback on my entry?

A. Due to the large number of applications we receive, we might not be able to provide individual feedback to all entries. Only the selected entries will receive feedback.

4. Can I submit both a photo story and a video documentary?

A. We recommend that you focus on one form of submission. However, if you wish to compete in both photo story and video documentary submissions, you may do so. 

5. Can entries be disqualified?

A. If your entry violates any of the criteria provided, it will be disqualified. Plagiarized content will be disqualified.

6. What about the entries from other states or solutions from other states?

A. We are inviting entries specific to Kerala that can document solutions to coastal climate challenges in  Kerala.

7. Can you give any examples of the themes of the contest?

A. Your entry can be on innovative waste management, eco-friendly product development, sustainable tourism models, etc.


8. How will the entries be judged?

A. The entries will be judged on the basis of content, creativity, presentation, and innovativeness and the final 15 participants can score a few extra points with social media engagement. (This will be communicated to the shortlisted candidates)

9. Why is (the Sustera foundation) conducting this contest?

A. We are conducting the contest as an opportunity for budding photographers,  filmmakers, and storytellers to look into the coastal issues and to bring out the solutions or innovations for the coastal climate issues of Kerala to the forefront.


10. What if my photo story has photos from multiple coastal regions of Kerala?

A. You can add locations to the description and briefly add the reason for choosing multiple coastal regions.

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