The Latino Film Institute’s Youth Cinema Project (YCP) started in 2014, as a way to close the achievement and opportunity gaps among Los Angeles area students to learn the skills of filmmaking through a 100% student-led, hands-on program. The program is made up of students from primarily Title 1 public schools around the state of California, to enable them to have equitable access to a rigorous filmmaking program.

Why partner with the Responsible Flushing Alliance (RFA)? RFA believes in the power of education to impact change. That relates both to skill-building opportunities, such as programs like YCP, and teaching conscious consumer behaviors, like learning to look for the “Do Not Flush” symbol and making environmentally sound choices about flushing as a result.

The Creative Brief

RFA and YCP, with support from the Los Angeles County Sanitation District (LACSD), created a compelling competition for the students. They were provided a detailed creative brief outlining the goal of making an advertising-based PSA video that creates new and engaging ways to reach consumers and promote #FlushSmart habits.

The students, ranging from elementary school to high school, were tasked with reading the creative brief, concepting a story, and creating a final video output. The students set off to complete the challenge in small groups, taking on different roles from cinematographers to actors, directors and writers, with help from mentors who are filmmaking and production professionals.

The Votes Are In

With 65 final submissions, the videos were narrowed down to the top 3 per category (elementary, middle school and alumni who are students that have taken part in YCP previously). On Saturday, April 20, 2024, the students, their families, media and industry peers were invited to a red-carpet awards ceremony at Bell Gardens High School to celebrate and announce the winners:

Elementary School Category Winners

  • First Place: “Don’t Flush It, Trash It,” Fremont’s Bees, Montebello Unified School District
  • Second Place: “Toilet Flushing Tips,” Eagle Films, Oxnard School District
  • Third Place: “Toilet Shark,” Bendrick Productions, Montebello Unified School District
  • Honorable Mentions: “Breaking Pipes,” Dino Kids, Montebello Unified School District; “Future Wipe,” Futuristic Wipes, Montebello Unified School District

Middle School Category Winners

  • First Place: “Toilet Besties,” Lights, Camera, Eastmont!, Montebello Unified School District
  • Second Place: “Billy the Educational Toilet Goblin,” Orangutan Spiders, El Monte City School District
  • Third Place: “Revenge of the Wipes,” The Wipes Fight Back, Montebello Unified School District
  • Honorable Mentions: “Clog Monster,” The British are Coming, El Monte City School District; “Talking Toilet,” TV Girl, El Monte City School District


  • First Place: “Fear the Flush,” Porcelain Pictures, YCP Alumni

All the RFA and YCP Flush Smart PSA award winners can be viewed here.

The Mission Continues

This filmmaking competition was an innovative way to educate young people on the importance of proper flushing and responsible environmental stewardship, as flushing the wrong items is currently wreaking havoc in homes and public spaces across the country. We remain committed to educate, collaborate and immerse ourselves deeper into Californian cultures to create healthy communities.

About Responsible Flushing Alliance

The Responsible Flushing Alliance (RFA) is a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization dedicated to consumer education focused on what not to flush. RFA’s goal is to change consumer behavior to help reduce damage to our nation’s sewage systems caused by objects and materials not designed to be flushed.