Featured image above: Film still from the documentary, Wade in the Water: Drowning in Racism

Florida Humanities is pleased to announce $75,000 in “Broadcasting Hope” Public Media Grants to four projects at four Florida public media stations. The funding will support media productions that highlight historical and current racial injustices and inspire courageous conversations to shift perspectives, foster unity and shape change. In this inaugural grant program, Florida Humanities offered up to $20,000 in funding to Florida public media radio and television stations to support innovative humanities-informed projects – audio, digital, film, and other media initiatives – that had strong grounding in the humanities and will be accessible to a broad public audience.

Following are the list of awards, alphabetical by granted organization:

WGCU – Florida Gulf Coast University Foundation (Lee)
“With a Made Up Mind” – $20,000

WGCU will create a half-hour documentary that explores the history of voter suppression among African Americans in Southwest Florida, and will draw on the voices of community leaders and humanities scholars to address how those historical inequalities are being addressed today to empower African American voters.

WPBT – South Florida PBS (Palm Beach)
“Wade in the Water: A Community Conversation” – $15,000

WPBT will host a public engagement event featuring filmmaker Cathleen Dean on the film, Wade in the Water: Drowning in Racism. The project will include a film screening and community “Town Hall” conversation funded by Florida Humanities as well as the production of three short profile segments that address the issue of drowning prevention and water safety, specifically among the African American community.

WUFT FM – University of Florida (Alachua)
“Evoking the Complexity of Black Experiences in Florida through Afrofuturism” – $20,000

WUFT will produce six 30-minute podcast series complemented by six three-minute animated vignettes along with multimedia open educational resources, with the purpose of engaging underserved communities to reimagine Florida history and collaboratively create representations of its future. Each episode will be paired with a community listening event located at spaces historically significant to the African American community.

WUSF – University of South Florida (Hillsborough)
“WUSF – The History of Now: Through Our Voices” – $20,000

WUSF will document the COVID-19 experience from the viewpoint of BIPOC Florida residents, giving a historical perspective to the pandemic and post-pandemic recovery, and then produce a series of two to 10 audio oral histories and an episode of Florida Matters on the topic to air in March 2022.