WMNF provides connection to information and organizations that empower people as our part in creating a just and sustainable world. That’s our mission. Heard or read on our various platforms just this month:
- Coral reefs in the Florida Keys are being bleached by “hot tub” temperature waters, as Sean Kinane reported on a recent Tuesday Café;
- The LBGTQ+ community and women once again are fighting for basic human rights, as Josh Holton reported on WMNF News; and
- Another contentious election year lies ahead.
- No longer are we just a local FM radio station. Today, WMNF is a multi-media platform that includes four streaming channels of (mostly) locally produced content, including streaming music, news, and podcasts.
We have a longstanding reputation as Tampa Bay’s source of local independent news and information. But, as your independent public media platform, we also have an obligation to serve as a community resource for people to tell their own stories.
At WMNF we strive to do more than be “the voice for the voiceless.” Rather, we are working to give microphones to the people in our community, teach them how to use them and provide a broader platform than they would normally have access to.
“Podcasts for Justice” is a program that does just that. WMNF shares space in our production studios with activists and organizations that are doing good work. Staff and volunteers teach these folks how to create audio content, and how to tell their lived experiences in their own words. Then we provide space on our digital platform so their stories can be streamed to listeners around the world.
You’ll hear clips from podcasts by local people who are doing incredible work to help people and our planet, including:
- Sukhi 222 founder Charles Holsopple talking with Professor David Himmelgreen of the Center for Food Security and Healthy Communities. Suki 222 wants to ensure that every person on Earth has daily access to a minimum of 2 gallons of water, 2000 calories of nutritious food, and 200 square feet of secure shelter;
- Marla Bautista who was 18 and homeless when she vowed that if she was ever able to get out of her situation, she would dedicate herself to helping others in similar situations. The Bautista Project is one of more than one hundred in the city of Tampa working to provide relief to those facing housing insecurity;
- Saba Baptiste who created Fire & Ice, a podcast that attacks “all subject matters impacting Black Americans’ culture and the enculturation of Africans and Caribbeans in the United States”; and,
- Tampa teens who are learning to create podcasts to process their thoughts and feelings in productive ways. Their chosen topic is “health,” becoming a discussion with their counsellor about physical health, then turned into a conversation about mental and emotional health.
These new podcasters tell important stories that give people hope. They inspire us to connect with each other, work together for a better world, and—I hope—cool tensions between people, through understanding and empathy. We’re creating content that hits people between the ears and in their hearts at the same time. You’ll start seeing and hearing and seeing these podcasts on our webpage and other streaming platforms soon.
If you or your organization are interested in learning more about the Podcasts for Justice program, I would love to hear from you. Just call 813-238-8001 or send an email to [email protected]
Thank you for being an important part of the WMNF community that has been giving voice to a more just and sustainable world since 1979.
Randi M. Zimmerman
General Manager, WMNF Public Media