Weekly Brief on Gun Violence and Prevention in Philadelphia

By The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting

Special announcement: New grant ensures next round of Credible Messenger Reporting Project

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Special announcement: New grant ensures next round of Credible Messenger Reporting Project
The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting will continue to recruit and train community journalists to produce stories from their neighborhoods.

Credible Messenger Maxayn Gooden discusses her experience at a recent screening of her team's production: "The Lasting Impact." Gooden also organized the event which included an intimate community conversation.
Credible Messenger Maxayn Gooden discusses her experience at a recent screening of her team's production: "The Lasting Impact." Gooden also organized the event which included an intimate community conversation.
This week, the Independence Public Media Foundation announced $4 million in grants supporting community media-makers, journalism, film and digital equity projects, including $100,000 from its Community Voices Fund to refine and expand our Credible Messenger Reporting Project.
This community reporting project trains, compensates and empowers people impacted by gun violence in Philadelphia to produce and distribute news reports addressing its root causes, their lived experience and possible solutions from the community perspective, with guidance from professional journalists.
Project design and planning will commence with stakeholder calls next month and applications will open later this year for new work to be produced and distributed next spring.
IPMF collaborated with the HealthSpark Foundation and the Knight-Lenfest Local News Transformation Fund to award the grants. Read the press release, list of grants and and an essay on what the foundation’s board and staff prioritized during this grants review process.
Credible Messenger Reports
Several productions from the first cohort of Credible Messengers have debuted recently and several more are coming soon. This work was piloted with support from a Community Voices Fund grant last year.
Trailer: Never Ending Emotion
Trailer: Never Ending Emotion
Credible Messenger community journalist Kimberly Kamara led the production of “Never Ending Emotions,” a series of interviews addressing “the emotional rollercoaster of life-changing events following the murder of a family member” and discussing possible solutions to gun violence in Philadelphia. Get your tickets now to attend the premiere on Friday, August 20 at The Philadelphia Ethical Society on Philadelphia’s Rittenhouse Square. (Eventbrite)
Trailer: The Path Forward
Trailer: The Path Forward
A new short documentary called “The Path Forward” shares a conversation among four mothers who lost sons to gun violence in Philadelphia, including intimate experiences from first getting the news to learning how to survive. Read more: Mothers discuss life after losing their sons to gun violence
The Lasting Impact
The Lasting Impact
The first production from the Credible Messenger Reporting Project focuses on three co-victims of gun violence who worked together to show the long-lasting effects it can have on friends, family and community members. Watch it now: The Lasting Impact
National model
Next: We have been working with partners in several other cities to explore the possibility of: “Refining and Replicating The Credible Messenger Reporting Project
About the Credible Messenger Reporting Project
Read the announcement from the project launch last year: “Credible messenger journalists will examine gun violence from community perspectives.”
More information
The new grant will be managed through our parent organization, The Initiative for Better Gun Violence Reporting. Visit: IBGVR.org
The learn more about programs at the Center for Gun Violence Reporting, visit: PCGVR.org
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The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting

Better gun violence reporting could enhance public understanding and support for effective programs and policies to prevent shootings and hopefully save lives. But what does the most ethical, impactful and empathetic reporting look like?

The Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting was launched to explore the hypotheses that changing the practice of news reporting can prevent gun violence. Since then, our research has refined this focus by identifying harmful reporting practices, asking what best practices would look like and how they could be implemented. Now, we have organized our work into three closely-aligned programs:

CREDIBLE MESSENGER REPORTING PROJECT

Our community reporting project trains, compensates and empowers people impacted by gun violence in Philadelphia to produce and distribute news reports on its root causes, their lived experience and possible solutions from the community perspective, with guidance from professional journalists.

RESEARCH AT THE CENTER

Our interdisciplinary research collaborative is exploring the intersection of gun violence, impacted communities and the media. Our Director of Research Dr. Jessica H. Beard is a trauma surgeon who cares for gunshot patients at Temple University Hospital and researches public health at Temple’s Lewis Katz School of Medicine. Her work is supported by a three-year Stoneleigh Foundation Fellowship.

BETTER GUN VIOLENCE REPORTING

Our professional development program strives to help journalists covering gun violence find a more diverse selection of experts, the most reliable data, evidence-based solutions, inspiring past reporting, strategies for community engagement, professional networking opportunities and additional resources. Representatives from every major Philadelphia news organization have participated.

VISION

We strive to model ourselves after other organizations that have dramatically advanced the practice of journalism. Within five years, we hope to support a small staff with a long runway for continuing operations and a strategic plan for sustainability.

Until then, we plan to continue supporting voices from the community, publishing research that informs best practices and building networks of journalists who believe we can all do better, make a difference and stop the violence.

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