Local that Works is an annual contest that spotlights innovative and replicable content, engagement and revenue initiatives at public radio and TV stations, and nonprofit news organizations in the U.S.
Explore the curated LTW database of 350+ projects. Entries from the 2020 contest will be added to this database this fall.
Tips on using the database: If viewing this on a computer, all projects are listed in the left column. Click on a project name and its longer profile will appear in the right column. If viewing on mobile, clicking on a project name will load the full listing on your screen.
You can filter your results by selecting a tag or multiple tags in the categories drop down menu and clicking on search. If you want to change, broaden or narrow the results, make sure to uncheck categories for subsequent searches.
To see previous Local that Works contest winners, finalists and semi-finalists, click on green, purple or orange tags and our judges’ favorite projects will show up in the left column.
53 results found.
Small businesses are major drivers of our economy and show higher rates of ownership by women and minorities than their large corporate counterparts. You Know The Place is a podcast that explores the stories and people behind these corner stores, local manufacturers, bodegas, and social clubs in our area and takes a closer look at what they bring to our communities.
As part of its newly-formed Queen City PodQuest Academy program, WFAE offered free “Podcasting 101” classes. Over the course of 10 weeks, students gained an understanding of the fundamentals of podcasting, production skills and marketing tips, and walked away with a resource list for the future. Of the 500 people who attended the classes, 30 went on to attend the Queen City PodQuest Academy for in-depth training and lessons. WFAE believes in the power of podcasting to amplify diverse voices, remove barriers to storytelling, and to build and connect communities. We want to help Charlotte area residents tap into the power of podcasting to tell their own unique stories.
Resettled is a six-part podcast series that explores the complex resettlement process through the perspectives of refugees. The podcast team included two former journalists from Afghanistan and a poet and social entrepreneur from Iraq who had experienced resettlement themselves and offered valuable insight. Working with local nonprofits, VPM held a series of storytelling workshops in the community, and recorded at booths during international festivals around the state.
Uncuffed is a podcast and radio series made by people incarcerated in California prisons. KALW producers teach them how to record and edit powerful audio stories about life on the inside.
¿Qué Pasa, Midwest? is a bilingual podcast that tells the stories of Latinx in the Midwest. Funded with support from CPB, the podcast facilitates difficult conversations and explores policy issues, such as immigration and the U.S. Census. WNIN reaches out to educational institutions to host listening parties share these stories with students. ¿Qué Pasa, Midwest?
A Parent’s Guide to Public Schools is a free “consumer report” tool, distributed to 50,000 families to aid parents in making decisions about their childrens’ education. The Guide, produced in English and Spanish, provides an overview of every local public school’s performance in easy-to-read charts, with answers to basic questions about public school options. VOSD works UC San Diego to analyze the school performance data and with the San Diego Workforce Partnership to cover topics like vocational training. Read Current’s coverage of this project.
Amplifier is a podcast that shines a light on Charlotte’s local music scene. More than 500 musicians have submitted their songs and shared their experiences. Amplifier launched with 20 episodes in 20 days, and is now a biweekly podcast featuring award-winning jazz singers to emerging pop acts, DIY venue owners to established record producers and beyond. Amplifier was named Charlotte Magazine’s “Best Podcast”, and received a Webby Award for innovation in music/arts podcasting.
Over 40.6 million Americans are living below the poverty line, including 13.3 million children. Chasing the Dream’s reporting, part of WLIW’s program called “Metro Focus,” the problems of economic and structural inequities informed by issues of race, age and class, and looks at solutions – what has worked and is working — to bring people out of poverty in the greater NYC area.
Classics for Kids, launched at WGUC in 1998, provides an educational and entertaining classical music experience for children. 23 stations now carry the Classics for Kids program; people all over the world use the website materials (570,000 uniques/ 5 million pvs in 2018). The Classics for Kids podcast is CPR’s most listened-to podcast (75,000+ downloads/mo). It provides education materials based on national and state standards, Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences and Critical Thinking skills based on Bloom’s Taxonomy.
You Know The Place
All of us pass by hundreds of small, local businesses on our daily commutes that we’ve never stopped at, shopped in, or even taken notice of. Overall, places like these employ 47 percent of workers and account for over 99 percent of businesses in this country. Main Street not only drives wide swaths of our economy but enjoys higher rates of ownership by women and minorities than their Wall Street counterparts. This led us to ask, who comprises their main customer base? How long have they been in business? How do they compete with big box stores, chains, and online services and retailers? What do they sell, offer, or make?
You Know The Place (YKTP), a podcast hosted by two local writers launched in March 2018 in order to answer those questions. The episodes feature a mix of both in-studio and field audio. Over the course of the five seasons produced as of 2020, YKTP has taken listeners to a diverse array of locations, including an Indian bodega, a naturist retreat on reclaimed mining land, a nonprofit acupuncture co-op, and a social club for gay men.
Many of the people and places we have featured have been historically underrepresented in public media, particularly in a largely rural state like Idaho. Additionally, our show puts the spotlight on local and small businesses at a time when brick-and-mortar storefronts are struggling to compete against Amazon, Walmart and other chains and online offerings. These challenges are compounded by the rising cost of prime real estate, health care, and other overhead expenses facing small businesses.
The show hinges entirely on community engagement. We encourage listeners to ask questions and they suggest the majority of the locations we visit. Our goal is to repay them by making them part of the experience. We’ve had a local food writer join us on a trip to a chicken shop, for example.
We’ve come to realize that YKTP is not only a catalyst for exploration and discovery, but a snapshot of a place and a time. The landscape of a city is always changing. New businesses have set up shop and been added to our list, while others we’ve visited have since closed.
Organizationally, this project has demonstrated to station leadership what can be accomplished if staff are allowed the time and space to experiment. It also stands as proof of concept that podcasts create important content that engages an audience (e.g. younger, diversified, digital natives, etc.) we may not otherwise be reaching with our broadcast programs.
While we haven't secured any foundation or grant support, we have generated some consistent, albeit minor, income via corporate sponsorships. For the last three seasons, we’ve had four sponsors interested in reaching an audience like ours: hyper-local, with a proven interest in small and local businesses.https://youknowtheplacepodcast.com/