WUCF serves the 18th largest DMA but has less than nine years of operating history and a small staff for our market size. How can the power of public media showcase our diverse community while operating with limited staff and resources? The answer was by leveraging the world-class content already being presented in Central Florida through our partners. As a result, we matched our strengths in production with the strengths of our partners to form The Content Collaborative.
The initiative began with the arts. WUCF’s Arts Collaborative was created in 2018 with the goals of increasing arts participation and producing arts-related content. The collaborative is now comprised of 24 partners and has delivered five programming titles in two years: A Classic Christmas, Melrose in the Mix, Live from Studio A, InReach and Jack and the Beanstalk.
The success of the Arts Collaborative proved the model could be used in other content areas. In 2019, WUCF launched NewsNight, a weekly series that gathers journalists from media outlets across Central Florida to dive deep into community issues with wide-ranging impact. NewsNight tells the story behind the story. WUCF partners with more than 30 local journalists and news organizations to provide timely, relevant information to our community.
To give the series an additional platform and audience, we partnered with two local public radio stations to air an audio version of NewsNight. The series could also easily be distributed online or through a podcast.
Following the success of NewsNight, WUCF developed a spinoff called NewsNight Conversations, a town hall forum for timely discussions. Most recently, we produced “NewsNight Conversations: A Question of Race, Answers for Kids.” Experts in child psychology, social justice and education addressed racism, George Floyd’s death, and raising the next generation to be advocates for themselves and others.
Since its inception, The Content Collaborative has served WUCF’s mission to be Central Florida’s Storyteller. The power of the Collaborative is also in fulfilling the missions of our partner organizations, which ultimately serves the needs of our community. Leveraging the strengths of all partners creates new audiences for all organizations and delivers exceptional content for the benefit of our viewers.