The two-year activity plan of the project included 12 cultural events aimed at raising awareness of invisible problems among women and families.   

A new annual festival – The Women’s Nights Film Festival (NÖFF) – has been added to the cultural calendar of Rapla County and the county has received more resonance nationwide, which promotes the region as a good living place.

The main objectives of the project is to stimulate exchanges of ideas, to enliven the cultural life and reduce deprivation of people living in the rural areas.

Presentation of the project

The Women’s Nights Film Festival NÖFF is a festival, which celebrates women in all their diversity and glory. NÖFF showcases the work of women on both sides of the camera. Women are the center of our stories either as filmmakers, performers, or main characters in the stories.

The Women’s Nights Film Festival NÖFF was established in 2019 when the small Estonian town of Rapla opened a brand-new black box type cinema. The festival was founded by the Entrepreneurial Women NGO in Rapla County. The NGO was established in 2009 and today consists of 90 members.

Why have a film festival concentrating on women, women filmmakers, and stories about the experience of being a woman? Research shows that the film industry is still a very sexist industry. Research has shown that 99% women working in the film and TV industries have experienced sexism. This correlates to the fact that by role, women comprise the minority amongst directors, writers, producers, editors, and cinematographers. Thus, the portrayal of women in film is still very stereotypical and unrealistic. Studies show that in films with at least one woman director there are substantially more women employed in

other key behind-the-scenes roles. Women support women.

Women deserve to be heard and seen on screen and behind the camera. NÖFF offers a platform for professional women authors, artists, performers, and filmmakers, may they be only just starting out in the industry or are well known already. NÖFF is offering quality content, entertainment, and profound discussions to broaden mindsets and keep building for a better tomorrow for womanhood.

Since the beginning, the festival’s aim has been to draw the attention on the different kinds of social topics:

NÖFF 2019 was the very first festival and was dedicated to the complicated subject of domestic violence.

NÖFF 2020 was all about motherhood.

NÖFF 2021 took a closer look on the very important subject of environment and women.

NÖFF 2022 took us on a journey with significant women in history.

NÖFF 2023 was focusing on mental and physical health of women.

 NÖFF 2024 will be all about women and power.

The screening of films is supported by Mrs. Tiina Lokk-Tramberg and her Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival team.

Emblematic character of the project

The Women’s Film Festival NÖFF was a completely first-time event in the county. In addition, it was a unique event all over Estonia. Such a film festival has never been held anywhere in Estonia before, although similar festivals take place in other parts of the world.

One of the important goals of the project, in addition to showing films, is to do good marketing for the region, but also to draw attention to how many young people from Rapla County are active on the Estonian film scene today, and several people engaged in photography and music have attracted international attention.  Several female directors, actors and producers are also associated with Rapla County.

Most of the members of the NGO are involved in the project. The project has resulted in strengthening the network of entrepreneurs in the county, and higer level of involvement among active people to support cultural events. As this is a project aimed at cinematography, we are also mapping the possibilities of distributing cinematography in the region. Whenever possible, we promote young people who have grown up in the county.

In turn, as the organization of major cultural events will certainly boost the region’s economy (catering, accommodation, etc).

Similar to the Entrepreneurial Women in Raplamaa NGO project, other applicants in the area of ​​action groups could organize events that have a slightly larger audience and highlight actual social issues. Our association of entrepreneurs has been a role model for several other associations of entrepreneurs established in Estonia.


Ettevõtlikud Naised Raplamaal MTÜ

Raplamaa Partnerluskogu MTÜ

LAG Raplamaa Partnership

Rapla County, Estonia