Today, on this special edition of Giving Tuesday, CURA Strategies is proud to support the Urban Health Media Project with a $500 donation to promote underrepresented students in voicing the health care problems directly affecting their communities.
The Urban Health Media Project (UHMP) teaches high school students in Washington, D.C. and Baltimore to report on health and social issues that are often overlooked in their communities. Co-founded by USA TODAY health care policy reporter Jayne O’Donnell, the students of UHMP produce multimedia reporting on burning topics in urban health, like socioeconomic and racial disparities in health outcomes; the insidious impact of violence; the alarming rise in teen suicide; and the importance of health policy concerns within the American political debate. Their reporting includes video, podcasts, articles and photography produced under the guidance of a diverse and experienced group of journalists.
In the first three years of the Urban Health Media Project, students were taught how to shoot videos and take photos by a two-time Emmy award winning USA TODAY multimedia journalist and how to interview and write by former reporters and editors from The Wall Street Journal, the Baltimore Sun and USA TODAY. They interviewed luminaries in powerful positions—including U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams—as well as people in their communities who had never told their powerful stories.
Their latest reporting, Coronavirus Chronicles, features raw and powerful storytelling from the front lines of some of the communities most affected by COVID-19. Each piece in the series views the pandemic through the unique perspectives of young, diverse Americans on issues such as mental health, food insecurity and geriatric health care.
Among their many accomplishments, UHMP students placed a page one USA TODAY cover story on “fatherlessness” for Father’s Day and a video interview on mental health with actress Taraji P. Henson. Two students spoke on Capitol Hill (and received standing ovations) about their projects on the “code of silence” around domestic and sexual violence in the African American and Hispanic communities. Former students now hold internships at Pomona College, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Virginia Union University, and University of the District of Columbia. All of their students are teachers and role models helping to show the next generation of student journalists how to spread the message of health and hope through multimedia storytelling.
Giving Tuesday is a global generosity movement unleashing the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world. This special edition of Giving Tuesday is a global day of unity taking place on May 5, 2020, as a response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19. Giving Tuesday is also an annual awareness day celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving.
For more information on how you can get involved with the Urban Health Media Project, visit their website.