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Facebook Awards Black Press of America Publishers $1.3 Million in Relief Grants

NNPA NEWSWIRE — The grants include $10.3 million awarded to 144 U.S local newsrooms as part of the COVID-19 Local News Relief Fund Grant Program. The fund is supporting many publishers who are hardest hit by this crisis, with nearly 80 percent of recipients being family- or independently owned and more than half are published by or for communities of color.

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The money was issued after Facebook received more than 2,000 applications for the COVID-19 Local News Relief Grant Program from newsrooms across every state in America, all U.S territories, and Washington, D.C.
The money was issued after Facebook received more than 2,000 applications for the COVID-19 Local News Relief Grant Program from newsrooms across every state in America, all U.S territories, and Washington, D.C.

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior Correspondent

@StacyBrownMedia

Facebook has announced that 15 member publishers of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) will receive $1.288 million in grants through the Facebook Journalism Project’s relief fund for local news.

The social media giant said more than 200 news organizations would receive nearly $16 million in grants, which stem from $25 million in local news relief funding announced in March as part of Facebook’s $100 million global investment in the news.

The grants include $10.3 million awarded to 144 U.S local newsrooms as part of the COVID-19 Local News Relief Fund Grant Program.

The fund is supporting many publishers who are hardest hit by this crisis, with nearly 80 percent of recipients being family- or independently-owned and more than half are published by or for communities of color.

The grants also include $5.4 million awarded to 59 North American newsrooms that participated in Facebook Local News Accelerator programs focused on subscriptions and memberships.

Facebook said the remaining funds would be used throughout 2020 to support projects focused on longer-term sustainability in local journalism.

That includes $2.5 million for Report for America, helping the group place 225 journalists in 160 local news organizations for their 2020 reporting corps.

Partnering with leading industry organizations like The Local Media Association (LMA) and The Lenfest Institute for Journalism to move quickly, the Facebook Journalism Project has awarded more than 600 grants across the U.S and Canada since the pandemic began, Facebook stated in a news release. Additional grant programs have been launched to support journalism around the world.

The NNPA is a trade organization that represents the Black Press of America. The following are among the NNPA member publications included in the latest round of Facebook grants:

“The Facebook Grant will help The AFRO continue its 127-plus year history of uninterrupted publishing and enable us to continue our legacy as one of the nation’s most trusted voices in the African American community,” stated Frances Murphy Draper, Publisher and fourth-generation member of The AFRO newspaper.

“Additionally, this grant will allow us to expand our human and technological resources, both of which are sorely needed to continue our award-winning coverage as well as our reach to our beloved community who is disproportionately affected by COVID-19. We are grateful for Facebook’s support and we congratulate our fellow NNPA publishers who also have received this award,” Draper said.

Sonny Messiah Jiles, the publisher of the Defender Network in Houston, rejoiced when she received news of the grant.

“To God the glory,” Jiles proclaimed. “I am grateful to Facebook for recognizing the importance and relevance of the Black Press especially considering the threat of COVID-19 on the African-American community and on our financial stability,” she stated.

Washington Informer Publisher Denise Rolark Barnes said the grant couldn’t have arrived at a better time.

“As the country faced a pandemic like none other and reported by The Washington Informer, we also realized our fate rested in our ability to continue to tell the story of the Black COVID experience while advertising revenues disappeared,” Rolark Barnes stated.

“This Facebook grant, along with other programs supporting newspapers and small business, is desperately needed. The grant helps us to continue telling our stories and significantly assists our efforts to innovate at the same time,” she said, adding that she’s to her fellow NNPA publishers and NNPA leadership for “bringing us all together.”

Janis Ware, the publisher of the Atlanta Voice, said many African American-owned newspapers are facing cancellations from advertisers and the closing of many community businesses.

The Facebook grant has provided an opportunity to replace some of that lost revenue.

“We are excited about the opportunity to continue our deep dive into digital transformation with the funding that was awarded to The Atlanta Voice from Facebook,” Ware stated.

“During this unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, which so adversely and disproportionately affects the African American community, we must double-down on our efforts to keep us informed. Our very lives depend on it,” Ware stated.

“This Facebook grant ensures that we will be able to continue to do so. It is a blessing and we are certainly grateful.”

Calvin Anderson, president of the New Tri-State Defender and the NNPA’s Region 2 President, added that the support from Facebook will position his newspaper to ramp up its ongoing coverage and interaction in the publication’s target zip code and enhance their technological capabilities.

“The Facebook grant will assist us greatly in reaching and serving our Memphis readers and enhance our digital presence,” Anderson stated.

“Prior to the pandemic, we identified the need to adjust our business and content model. The goals were to significantly increase our digital footprint while expanding the depth, variety and quality of our coverage. The COVID-19 crisis and the pandemic response forced virtual communication unto our front burner in a way that foreshadow permanent change,” he said.

Anderson continued:

“We are extremely grateful for this grant support from the Facebook Journalism Project Supporting Local News Coverage of COVID-19 Program. Our selection largely reflects the dedicated work of our boots-on-ground staffers. Performing well during the pandemic means to us conveying timely needed information for safety and security. Our team has been getting the job done for our audiences under extremely difficult circumstances.”

The money was issued after Facebook received more than 2,000 applications for the COVID-19 Local News Relief Grant Program from newsrooms across every state in America, all U.S territories, and Washington, D.C.

The grant recipients were selected through a process led by the LMA and The Lenfest Institute for Journalism and with significant contributions from the Institute for Nonprofit News (INN), Local Independent Online News Publishers (LION), Local Media Consortium (LMC), and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), according to the news release.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the critical role local news plays in our communities, while simultaneously threatening their very existence,” said Jonathan Kealing, INN’s chief network officer.

“Reviewing hundreds of applications on a tight timeline both illustrated the depth of need, but also highlighted the innovation that these small, independent publishers can provide for their communities when given the resources,” he said. “I’m excited to see new news products and more critical original reporting in these communities, thanks to Facebook’s support.”

Facebook noted that the pool of grant recipients is notable in several ways:

  • Nearly four in five are family- or independently owned.
  • Half are published by or for communities of color.
  • Nearly 40 percent are digitally native publishers.
  • Just over a third are non-profits.

“We’re proud to support this diverse group of publishers — many of which are family- or independently owned,” said Campbell Brown, VP of global news partnerships at Facebook.

“Not only are these journalists working tirelessly to serve people right now — they’re focused on transformation, building innovative local news businesses that can continue to serve communities beyond the current pandemic,” Brown stated.

The NNPA congratulates “the publishers whose applications and proposals were accepted and awarded by Facebook,” stated Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. “Last month, we informed all of our member publishers about the Facebook grant opportunity. I am hopeful that this initial round of much-needed funding will open the door for our other NNPA member publishers to also apply for this type of financial assistance. We appreciate Facebook and their partners for supporting the Black Press. The financial enhancement and support of the Black Press is critically needed amidst this terrible pandemic that continues to devastate Black America across the United States. Local media is fundamental and a vital prerequisite to an inclusive democracy and economy.”

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Carolyn’s Kids Foundation Honors Graduates

NNPA NEWSWIRE — Each 8th-grade student received a $100 gift card to go towards their high school fees. Additionally, two high school seniors received the CKF HBCU-Jackson State Bound Scholarship. Jamari White and Kevin Barber Jr. both received $1000 each. Two $500 scholarships were awarded to mothers who are continuing their postsecondary education.
The post Carolyn’s Kids Foundation Honors Graduates first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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On Sunday, June 5, 2022, the Carolyn’s Kids Foundation honored 140, 8th-grade students across Chicagoland areas. Hosted at Visions Events Chicago at 11901 S. Loomis, parents, students, and schoolteachers participated in the 6th Annual CKF Scholarship Luncheon.

HBCU Bound Scholars-Jackson State University Carolyn Griffin Palmer, CKF-CEO, Kevin Barber Jr., Jamari White, and Brendolyn Hart-Glover, President of the Jackson State University Chicago Alumni Chapter

HBCU Bound Scholars-Jackson State University
Carolyn Griffin Palmer, CKF-CEO, Kevin Barber Jr., Jamari White, and Brendolyn Hart-Glover, President of the Jackson State University Chicago Alumni Chapter

HBCU Bound Scholars-Jackson State University
Carolyn Griffin Palmer, CKF-CEO, Kevin Barber Jr., Jamari White, and Brendolyn Hart-Glover, President of the Jackson State University Chicago Alumni Chapter

Each 8th-grade student received a $100 gift card to go towards their high school fees. Additionally, two high school seniors received the CKF HBCU-Jackson State Bound Scholarship. Jamari White and Kevin Barber Jr. both received $1000 each. Two $500 scholarships were awarded to mothers who are continuing their postsecondary education.

Carolyn’s Kids Foundation has awarded over $50,000 in the past 5 years, and this year $17,000 was distributed to the Class of 2022. To support the Carolyn’s Kids Foundation and learn more, please visit their website: www.ckfchicago.org and follow them on FB @ckfchicago.

The post Carolyn’s Kids Foundation Honors Graduates appeared first on Chicago Defender.

The post Carolyn’s Kids Foundation Honors Graduates first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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Justice Department Announces Investigation of the Louisiana State Police

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “Every American, regardless of race, has the right to constitutional policing,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “Based on an extensive review of publicly available information and information provided to us, we find significant justification to investigate whether Louisiana State Police engages in excessive force and engages in racially discriminatory policing against Black residents and other people of color.”
The post Justice Department Announces Investigation of the Louisiana State Police first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
@StacyBrownMedia

The U.S. Department of Justice has opened a pattern or practice investigation into the Louisiana State Police (LSP) to assess whether the law enforcement agency uses excessive force and whether it engages in racially discriminatory policing.

According to a news release, the investigation will include a comprehensive review of LSP policies, training, supervision, and force investigations, as well as LSP’s systems of accountability, including misconduct complaint intake, investigation, review, disposition, and discipline.

“Protecting the civil rights of all Americans and building trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve are among the Justice Department’s most important responsibilities,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said in the release.

“This investigation, like all of our pattern or practice investigations, will seek to promote the transparency, accountability, and public trust that is essential to public safety.”

The DOJ said it’s conducting the investigation pursuant to the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which prohibits state and local governments from engaging in a pattern or practice of conduct by law enforcement officers that deprives individuals of rights protected by the Constitution or federal law.

The statute allows the DOJ to remedy such misconduct through civil litigation, and law enforcement practices under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, as well as under the Safe Streets Act of 1968 and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Officials called the investigation separate from any federal criminal investigation of LSP troopers.

Before the announcement, DOJ officials informed Governor John Bel Edwards, Colonel Lamar Davis, and Deputy General Counsel Gail Holland of the investigation.

According to the news release, each pledged to cooperate with the investigation.

As part of the investigation, DOJ officials will reach out to community groups and members of the public to learn about their experiences with LSP.

The Special Litigation Section of the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Offices for the Eastern, Middle, and Western Districts of Louisiana are conducting the investigation jointly.

“Every American, regardless of race, has the right to constitutional policing,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.

“Based on an extensive review of publicly available information and information provided to us, we find significant justification to investigate whether Louisiana State Police engages in excessive force and engages in racially discriminatory policing against Black residents and other people of color.”

Clarke continued:

“The Justice Department stands ready to use every tool in our arsenal to confront allegations of misconduct and to ensure legitimacy during encounters with law enforcement.”

The DOJ ask that anyone with relevant information to contact them via email at Community.Louisiana@usdoj.gov or by phone at (202) 353-0684.

Individuals can also report civil rights violations regarding this or other matters using the Civil Rights Division’s reporting portal, available at civilrights.justice.gov.

The post Justice Department Announces Investigation of the Louisiana State Police first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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PRESS ROOM: 81 Grassroots Organizations Awarded a Total of $750,000 in Grants through Industry’s ‘Make Golf Your Thing’ Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiative

NNPA NEWSWIRE — The grant program is part of the industry’s broader commitment to making the sport more inclusive for all. Last month, a new Make Golf Your Thing search directory was launched for consumers, consisting of more than 8,400 registered golf programs and organizations across the U.S.
The post PRESS ROOM: 81 Grassroots Organizations Awarded a Total of $750,000 in Grants through Industry’s ‘Make Golf Your Thing’ Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiative first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – 81 grassroots golf organizations will receive a total of $750,000 in funding to further their efforts to engage underrepresented populations of the sport. These groups (*full list below) are being awarded with a grant through Make Golf Your Thing, the industry’s commitment to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in making the sport more welcome for all.

Initially introduced in 2021 (by the Make Golf Your Thing youth & adult player development work group), the grant program to date has provided 155 grants to 111 unique grassroots organizations, totaling more than $1 million overall (May 2021: 43 grants totaling $150,000; Jan. 2022: 31 grants totaling $150,000).

The program was established to support organizations dedicated to increasing participation among golf’s underrepresented populations (i.e., Black, Latinx, Asian, Indigenous communities, as well as women, LGBTQI+ individuals, veterans, and individuals with disabilities).

“When the game comes together and pools every resource to grow and broaden the reach of the game, only great things can happen,” said Mike Whan, CEO of the USGA and executive sponsor of the youth & adult player development work group for Make Golf Your Thing.

“This unifying movement is helping to make a difference in communities across America and advance the game in ways none of us can do alone.”

“Access to golf in a business context is a pathway to opportunity,” said Anna Alvarez Boyd, co-founder of FairWays to Leadership (one of the 81 grant recipients).

“Our group’s mission is to increase diversity in business and in golf by teaching college students from diverse backgrounds the skills they need to become effective leaders. The financial commitment of the grant program to organizations like ours will only further golf’s collective efforts to bring new and diverse audiences into our sport.”

The grant program is part of the industry’s broader commitment to making the sport more inclusive for all. Last month, a new Make Golf Your Thing search directory was launched for consumers, consisting of more than 8,400 registered golf programs and organizations across the U.S.

The directory allows individuals to search for programs and events using filters such as location, age, ability, gender, etc., giving new and diverse audiences an opportunity to become more engaged in the sport through programs in their own community.

Formally launched in May 2021, Make Golf Your Thing is the industry’s movement to make golf accessible to individuals from all backgrounds.

Led by six cross-industry work groups, the initiative is specifically focused on: education & skill development, talent acquisition, procurement, human resources, youth & adult player development, and marketing/communications.

Funding for the grant program is being administered by the American Golf Industry Coalition, a partnership among golf’s leading organizations to promote and advocate for the collective interests of the sport.

Financial support for the program is led by a contingent of industry supporters committed to making the sport more welcoming and inclusive for all.

About Make Golf Your Thing

A multi-faceted, multi-year movement, Make Golf Your Thing is a collaborative effort across the industry to invite more people to golf from all backgrounds.

Six cross-industry work groups are committed to making the sport more diverse, equitable and inclusive, with a specific focus on: education & skill development, talent acquisition, procurement, human resources, youth & adult player development, and marketing/communications. For more, www.makegolfyourthing.org.

About the American Golf Industry Coalition

The American Golf Industry Coalition advocates on behalf of golf’s diversity, equity and inclusion efforts; environmental and sustainability initiatives; contributions to the economy (local and national); health and wellness benefits, as well as charitable giving.

The organization unites the golf industry in pursuit of goals designed to enhance the vitality and diversity of both the business and recreational levels of the sport. The American Golf Industry Coalition is a division of the World Golf Foundation.

To learn more, visit www.golfcoalition.org.

Grassroots Organization City/Town State
A Perfect Swing Foundation Inc. Charlotte NC
Adaptive Golfers North Myrtle Beach SC
Annika Foundation Orlando FL
Be Counted On Foundation Gahanna OH
Black College Golf Coaches Association Vestavia AL
Button Hole Providence RI
Cameron Champ Foundation Citrus Heights CA
CitySwing Foundation Washington D.C.
County of Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation Alhambra CA
DC on the Green McKinney AL
Edu-Sports Academy Willingboro NJ
El Dorado High School Golf Team El Paso TX
Excel Youth Academy Lawrenceville GA
FabNewport, Inc Newport RI
FairWays to Leadership, Inc. Orlando FL
First Tee – Central Florida Orlando FL
First Tee – Central Mississippi Flowood MS
First Tee – Greater Charleston Mt. Pleasant SC
First Tee – Greater Richmond Richmond VA
First Tee – Greater Sacramento (Sacramento Area Youth Golf Association) Sacramento CA
First Tee – Greater Trenton Trenton NJ
First Tee – Greater Tyler Bullard TX
First Tee – Greater Washington, DC Washington D.C.
First Tee – Greater Wichita Wichita KS
First Tee – Indiana Indianapolis IN
First Tee – Jersey Shore Point Pleasant NJ
First Tee – North Florida (Rising Leaders of North Florida, Inc.) St. Augustine FL
First Tee – Omaha (Hogan’s Junior Golf Heroes) Omaha NE
First Tee – Pittsburgh Pittsburgh PA
First Tee – Southeastern New Mexico Roswell NM
First Tee – Tennessee Knoxville TN
First Tee – Triangle Raleigh NC
First Tee – Tulsa (Youth Development of Tulsa) Tulsa OK
First Tee – West Michigan (Lake Michigan Junior Golf Association) Kentwood MI
Fore Life Inc. Lauderhill FL
Fore the Ladies Sylvania OH
Future Successors Atlanta GA
Gator Junior Golf Association Gainesville FL
Girls Golf of America, Inc. Greensboro NC
Golf. My Future. My Game. Washington D.C.
Greater Cleveland Junior Golf Scholarship Fund Bedford OH
Harris Park Midtown Sports & Activity Center Kansas City MO
Hi-Tee Junior Little League Golf Program Renton WA
Hit It Straight Golf Academy Homewood IL
I AM a Golfer Foundation Dallas TX
iGolf4VETS, Inc. Riverview FL
Inland Golf Academy Riverside CA
Inner City Youth Golfers’ Inc. Palm Beach Gardens FL
Inspiring Greatness In You Covington GA
Jackson Park Golf Association Chicago IL
Ladies of Futurity, Inc West Palm Beach FL
Latina Golfers Association Foundation Los Angeles CA
Little Linksters Sorrento FL
Matrix Human Services Detroit MI
Michigan Women’s Golf Association Detroit MI
Midnight Golf Program Bingham Farms MI
Milwaukee Area Youth Golf Academy, Inc. Glendale WI
Moore-Myers Children’s Fund Jacksonville FL
My Vision Golf Fayetteville GA
New Jersey Golf Foundation Inc. Bedminster NJ
Next 18 Fox Point WI
Northern Texas PGA Foundation – Fairway to Success Dallas TX
One Hundred Black Men, Inc. New York NY
Par Excellence Youth Development Huntsville AL
Range Fore Hope Foundation Blythewood SC
Rose Hill Schools Rose Hill KS
Southern California Golf Association – Junior Golf Foundation Studio City CA
Southern Area Youth Program, Inc. Los Angeles CA
Special Olympics Connecticut Hamden CT
SwingPals, Inc. Durham NC
Ted Rhodes Foundation, Inc. Chicago IL
The Caddie & Leadership Academy Kenosha WI
The Darby Foundation Lafayette LA
The Glove Foundation Mobile AL
The Honors Junior Golf Program Corona CA
The Pinkney Foundation Pittsburg CA
Upstate-Carolina Adaptive Golf Greenville SC
Western States Junior Golf Association Las Vegas NV
Women Golfers Give Back Plymouth Meeting PA
Women in Golf Foundation, Inc. Ellenwood GA

The post PRESS ROOM: 81 Grassroots Organizations Awarded a Total of $750,000 in Grants through Industry’s ‘Make Golf Your Thing’ Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiative first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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