Community Storytelling

Focus Areas
Film
Media Training
Immigrant Voices
Archives
Representation in Media
Community-Centered Journalism
Media Policy
Movement Media
BIPOC Stories
Collaborative Audio
Community Radio
LGBTQIA+

The Greater Philadelphia region is a hub for BIPOC-led grassroots media groups and projects with deep roots in the communities they serve. At the same time, they have to go through hoops to gain access to resources that would help them grow and strengthen their organizations, support the important role they play in their communities, and give them equal footing with white-led/mainstream media organizations.

IPMF believes that storytelling builds and strengthens community resilience and brings ideas to life. Through the Community Storytelling program, the foundation supports storytelling that centers, preserves, and highlights the complex experiences of diverse and marginalized communities through a lens of care and compassion. The program supports:

  • Projects or organizations that aim to increase the representation and visibility of storytelling by communities harmed by systems of oppression and media erasure. 
  • Independent filmmaking by emerging and professional storytellers to tell their own stories and share it with a wider audience. 
  • Community radio networks and collaborative audio storytelling that report, discuss, connect, and distribute news and stories important to neighborhoods in the region. 
  • New and existing archives, community history projects, and BIPOC stories that help communities deepen their connections, reclaim narratives, and build power. 
  • Projects or organizations that aim to increase local audience engagement with independent filmmaking, community storytelling and archives.

Examples of this work include:

  • BlackStar Philadelphia Filmmaker Lab, a fellowship designed to support emerging Black, Brown, and Indigenous filmmakers. 
  • Presente Media, a Latinx collective of journalists and filmmakers producing bilingual media focused on social justice. 
  • G-town Radio, a community radio station in Germantown focusing on local news, ideas, sounds not heard on mainstream radio.

See our glossary for definitions of terms we use to describe our work

What We Support

    Projects

    $33,500 - Awarded July 2020

    Focus areas
    Archives
    Description

    The 2020 Community Voices grant will support a time capsule book and website of essays, photographs, poems and other creative formats documenting the Uprising (Against White Supremacy, in Defense of Black Lives) in Philadelphia from May-June 2020. The project will collage intergenerational reflections of Black Philadelphians with an intersectional emphasis and attunement to the ongoing labor of “how we get free.”

    $100,000 - Awarded July 2020

    Focus areas
    Movement Media
    Description

    The 2020 Community Voices grant will support a collaboration between 215 People's Alliance, Reclaim Philadelphia, Free Press, and Movement Alliance Project to strengthen and expand information networks that were created in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Using innovative outreach and organizing tactics to meet information needs, the group's project will lift up stories of disconnected and disaffected Philadelphians, and support Black dignity, where systemic barriers to timely, quality information have left city residents in the dark during a public health emergency.

    $50,000 - Awarded July 2020

    Focus areas
    Representation in Media
    Movement Media
    Description

    The 2020 Community Voices grant will support the creation of the Coatesville Black Media Renaissance (CBMR) project, which will use storytelling and media-making to heal and reconcile race relations in the city of Coatesville. Specifically, CMBR will provide local artists and storytellers a vehicle to amplify community voices through a variety of media platforms such as film, print media, and mural arts to create a community driven media model that activates change against unjust media narratives, policing, and other racist practices that continue to marginalize Coatesville residents.

    $50,000 - Awarded July 2020

    Focus areas
    Movement Media
    Media Training
    Representation in Media
    Community-Centered Journalism
    Description

    The 2020 Community Voices grant will support “Just Love Stories,” a multimedia series that documents stories of love, justice, and culture that work towards social justice. Stories written by, as well as interviews of, community groups and individuals leading movements will be featured in a documentary web series titled “Just Love.”

    $9,500 - Awarded July 2020

    Focus areas
    Youth
    Description

    The 2020 Community Voices grant will support the creation of a video documentary and multimedia performance of young peoples' artistic response to the impact of COVID-19 on their lives and their communities.

    Stay in Touch

    Sign up for our Community Zine to get notified of available grants and stay up-to-date on grantee work.