NCFL selected by national grant competition to develop podcast series

The National Center for Families Learning (NCFL) has been selected to develop a national podcast series to help broaden our country’s conversation about poverty and economic mobility.

Today, NCFL was named a recipient of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Voices for Economic Opportunity Grand Challenge, which seeks to elevate diverse voices in order to broaden the conversation about the issues inhibiting economic mobility and generate deeper awareness along with actionable understanding. NCFL was selected from more than 1,200 applicants as one of 28 grantees working to dispel myths about poverty and economic mobility.

To do this work, NCFL will develop and launch a new podcast series that will highlight the remarkable stories of low-income, diverse families across the U.S. who have improved their communities through Family Service Learning. Over the next 16 months, NCFL will engage with families from across the country to share their stories of leading intergenerational service learning projects in their communities. Their stories will then be incorporated into personal, in-depth features to create a series of podcasts that will be distributed nationally.

Family Service Learning is a research-based approach to improving communities while building leadership skills. Developed by NCFL with seed funding from Toyota, Family Service Learning has been implemented in 45 communities nationwide and creates conditions for networks of families to identify challenges and historic barriers in their communities, work together to design a solution, carry out the solution, and share their work with other residents. As a result, families practice employability skills, combat the social isolation common in high poverty areas, and lead and drive change in their communities through their agency and voice.

Over the next year, families will tell their stories via podcast episodes, which will be published from July to October 2021. The series will enable listeners to learn firsthand about the nuances and multilayered complexities that create and perpetuate inequitable systems resulting in poverty throughout the country.

The Grand Challenge is made possible through funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Raikes Foundation, Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, James Irvine Foundation, Omidyar Network, and Schultz Family Foundation. You can read NCFL’s full release or learn more about the Grand Challenge here.