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. IMPORTANT: 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.
88 results found.
CareerExplore Northwest is an educational initiative created by KSPS PBS as a workforce development solution for our viewing region. Far beyond a typical job search website, it helps students and adults discover viable career paths by providing behind-the-scenes videos and easily accessible answers to questions about in-demand jobs in the Spokane region and what it takes to get them.
In partnership with Fresno Unified School District, the 3rd largest in the state of California and a district with 90% economically disadvantaged and diverse students living below the poverty line without equal access to online learning, Valley PBS created an on-air program from 8am – 9am each day that targets Literacy Lessons for K, 1st, 2nd and 3rd graders and is taught by FUSD teachers. Students have been able to learn and review fundamentals over-the-air, streaming on Facebook Live daily and on the website since June and lessons are translated into Spanish and Hmong as well; the program has just been extended until December 18th and expanded to include Pre-K and T-K lessons.
Through its partnership with local government, WCTE was able to broadcast live emergency updates from inside Putnam County’s Emergency Operations Center just hours after an EF4 tornado struck Cookeville, destroying entire subdivisions and killing more than 20 people. This capability existed because county officials partnered to provide WCTE with studio space, audio and video equipment and a direct internet link between the Emergency Management Agency building and WCTE’s Master Control.
By building strong, consistent relationships with tribal leaders and by representing Wisconsin’s First Nations authentically and accurately by using first-voice narration, PBS Wisconsin shares consistent programming that highlights tribal history, culture, and lore.
As Detroit emerged as an early epicenter of the COVID-19 crisis, Detroit Public Television (DPTV) became a key media partner in the COVID313 Coalition, a group of grassroots organizations that united to help Detroiters access critical information about services in the area. By producing a weekly town hall that was streamed on Facebook Live, as well as broadcasting segments on our weekly public affairs show One Detroit, DPTV and the COVID313 coalition filled a void in the emergency response system and connected our audience with life-saving services
PBS Wisconsin shares the voices and talents of students of color involved in the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s First Wave Scholarship program in the documentary “Hip-Hop U: The First Wave Scholars.” By addressing local disparities in accessibility, representation, and education, we help Wisconsin educators be better prepared to implement culturally relevant pedagogy in their classrooms.
The Life Autistic is an extensive multi-platform project that explores the lives of Iowans with Autism Spectrum Disorder. It features people of different ages and abilities who each have a unique story to tell and delves into their challenges and successes.
Twin Cities PBS (TPT)’s groundbreaking multi-platform arts program, ART IS, elevates renowned Minnesota artists of color who pick three up-and-coming artists – across any genre – and develop a series of media and public events. Over a 9-month period, TPT and artists co-create powerful short digital films that provide context and visibility for the artists’ work, enhanced by a series of public events in TPT’s studios that engage local audiences in new ways and help sustain and evolve our vibrant local artistic community.
Seven Pennsylvania Public Media stations (WHYY, WITF, WLVT/PBS39, WPSU, WQED, WQLN, and WVIA) developed a collaborative programming and online media effort focused on the opioid crisis in Pennsylvania with the goals of increasing awareness, reducing stigma, and helping affected people find treatment. This state-wide project included long-form documentaries, online features, educational interstitials, and strong social media support. Battling Opioids helped to direct more than 23,000 calls to the state helpline since the project started by highlighting the phone number at every touchpoint. Read Current’s coverage of this project.
CareerExplore Northwest began in response to feedback from the Spokane area business community expressing a desire for a strong workforce for our region. Employers wanted to hire locally but lamented the lack of qualified or interested applicants. At the same time, local school districts were beginning to expand their goals beyond preparing students for four-year college degrees, recognizing the many options for living-wage jobs that required other types of training.
Starting in 2018, we developed an advisory council made up of the Spokane Workforce Council, industry leaders, Spokane’s chamber of commerce (GSI), several area school districts, regional universities, and our community colleges to help find a solution. The result is CareerExplore Northwest, a multimedia tool and community resource for students and adults that provides practical, up-to-date information about a variety of jobs in our region.
We began by working with businesses to produce 90-second job spotlights. We interviewed employees who were passionate about their work in order to inspire young people to seek out more information. Businesses and grantors cover our production costs and also receive an underwriting schedule on KSPS PBS.
We built a website, CareerExploreNW.org, to feature the job spotlights provide up-to-date data from the Spokane Workforce Council. CareerExplore Northwest has become a bridge between educators and industry. MacKay Manufacturing, our first sponsor, reported that 40 percent of their website traffic was driven by CareerExploreNW.org.
We regularly consult with Career and Technical Education specialists at area school districts to ensure the website meets their educational needs and to help them promote its use in schools. Our advisory council meets regularly to discuss project growth and assess how well the site is meeting local needs.
As we continue the project, at the request of both educators and businesses, we are creating 360-degree interactive Virtual Field Trips, where students can click-and-drag for an up-close look behind the scenes at regional companies.
CareerExplore Northwest has an impact that extends beyond its use in schools. While the primary demographic of the site is people under the age of 35, because the job spotlights also air on KSPS PBS, both young people and adults learn about jobs they may never have been exposed to otherwise.
CareerExplore Northwest has generated in excess of $300,000 in business sponsorship, mostly from new sponsors.