Frequently asked questions

CFA GIF Newsletter

What are the Smiley Charity Film Awards?

The Charity Film Awards have been created to celebrate the success of film in fundraising, to increase exposure of charity films and to encourage donations for good causes. 

Who are they for?

The Smiley Charity Film Awards is open to all registered charities, community interest companies (CICs) and social enterprises within the UK. 

The Corporate Cause category is open to brands and corporate organisations. 

Who can enter?

Anyone can nominate a video on behalf of the charity, CIC, social enterprise, brand or corporate.

This could be the agency that created the film or the organisation itself. If the nomination is from a source other than the organisation itself, the Smiley Charity Film Awards team will contact the organisation for approval before the nomination is accepted.

What are the categories?

Films under 5 minutes 

The categories are based on the charity's income for the latest financial year. This is to ensure everyone has a chance to win an award regardless of the size of the organisation and budget. These categories are:

  • Under £250,000
  • £250,000-£1 Million
  • £1-5 Million
  • £5-10 Million
  • £10-25 Million
  • £25-50 Million
  • £50-100 Million
  • Over £100 Million

Long-form (films over 5 minutes)

  • Longform Under £1 Million
  • Longform £1-10 Million
  • Longform Over £10 Million

Corporate Cause

The Corporate Cause category was created to recognise corporate giving and celebrate organisations that put people, planet and purpose at the heart of their business operations.

International Entry

This dedicated section celebrates the diverse and impactful films submitted from around the world.

How can I check my charity’s turnover/income?

It's essential to check your charity’s income. You can check your charity’s turnover using the below links:

England and Wales 


Northern Ireland

Why do you segment by turnover?

We want the Smiley Charity Film Awards to help promote films for good regardless of the size of the organisation behind the film. Segmenting by income creates a level playing field so that charities are matched against others with similar resources and audiences.

How many videos can I enter?

You can enter 1 video in your turnover category.

It is possible to enter 2 videos if you have 1 video that is longer than 5 minutes and 1 that is shorter than 5 minutes - 1 video in your turnover category and 1 in the correct longform category (based on turnover).

However, we strongly recommend only entering 1 film. Please bear in mind if you enter 2 films you will need to work twice as hard to promote them to your supporters for votes.

What is the entry deadline?

Entries for the 2024 awards open on the 2nd of October 2023 and close on the 6 December 2023. The Corporate Cause and International Impact categories are open until 31 January 2024.

How much is it to enter?

It is free to enter. 

What is the shortlisting process?

The finalists are decided by the results of the public vote.

When will the shortlist be announced?

The shortlist will be announced the week commencing 29 January 2024.

Who decides the finalists and winners?

The winners will be decided by our panel of expert judges. The judges will select finalists in each category from the shortlist. 

The exact number of finalists will vary depending on category size, votes scored and judges' scores.

The winners of People's Choice in each category are decided solely by public vote.

Public Voting

How does the public voting work?

The public can vote for their favourite charity video by registering to vote during the public voting stage. Those who have registered can vote for as many films as they like, however they can only vote once for each film.

There is no public vote for the Corporate Cause or International Impact category.

Why do we ask people to register to vote?

To ensure that only 1 vote per film is counted, we ask for some details. This is simply so that we can make sure that the voting process is fair. We will never give voter details to anyone else, but we may contact them when we announce the winners.

How will the entries be judged?

Winning entries will be those finalists which, in the opinion and sole discretion of the panel of judges, best meet the judging criteria. We have a large pool of varied professionals within the judging panel to avoid bias. 

Any judge, with any personal interest or in any way related to a category will not be able to cast a vote for that category. The judges’ decisions is final and binding in all respects on all entrants. No correspondence will be entered into.


Grand Prix Charity Film of the Year

There will be an overall winner award for the very best charity film of the year. This award is based on a combination of judges scores and public voting.

Grand Prix People's Choice Award

The film that receives the highest number of public votes.

Winners - Turnover Category

Awarded to the winning film in each category based on judges' scores.

Winners - People's Choice - Turnover Category

Awarded to film that receives the most votes in each turnover category.

Silver and Bronze Awards

In each turnover category and in each People's Choice turnover category there is also a Silver and Bronze awarded.

Corporate Cause Award

A category for films for brands and corporate organisations to enter their CSR or ESG films.

When will the winners be announced?

The winners will be announced at a red carpet ceremony at ODEON Luxe Leicester Square, on 20 March 2024, the International Day of Happiness.

How much will it be to attend the awards ceremony?

Each finalist charity receives 2 free tickets to attend the ceremony. Additional tickets will be available for purchase.

Who is the Charity Film Awards organised by?

The Charity Film Awards are sponsored by Smiley, and administered by its nonprofit, Smiley Movement CIC

Question not answered?

Use the contact us page to contact the team.