Giving Compass' Take:

• Brandon Dorfman, writing for Generosity, discusses how a grant is amplifying BIPOC voices as they illustrate the struggle for representation during COVID-19.

• Why is it critical to amplify Black and brown voices in coronavirus reform issues? How are you amplifying BIPOC voices -- narratives, media, projects, and other solutions -- in your community throughout this crisis?

• Read about the importance of investing in Black-led organizations for racial justice.

In the post-COVID world, the novel coronavirus disproportionately affects African Americans and people of color, on average, about three times more than their white counterparts. Cynthia Primas believes there is a moral imperative to elevate the voices of those most afflicted.

Telling stories, said Primas, might force those in power to pay attention. It may also make it possible to right the wrongs of the past while opening opportunities to marginalized groups.

“[I hope] that the stories become stories of hope with solutions attached that can be a testament to a better future for those who have been affected and that they get to regain their dignity,” said Primas who serves as the president and CEO of the youth empowerment nonprofit Institute for the Development of Education in the Arts in Camden.

As part of their efforts to facilitate these narratives, IDEA launched the “Unmemorial” project. The initiative seeks to platform misrepresented groups and use their stories to re-commemorate space at Rutgers University’s Johnson Park once occupied by a mosaic frieze depicting racist images of Native Americans bowing down in subservience to Christopher Columbus.

The project is one of almost 50 awarded funding as part of the Independence Public Media  Foundation’s Community Voices grants. Awardees will record, document, share, and preserve the underrepresented voices and narratives of COVID-19 using a variety of different media.

Grant winners from across the region comprise several collaborative efforts. Together, this group will create an expanded information network in response to COVID-19. According to the IPMF, this new collective hopes to “lift up stories of disconnected and disaffected Philadelphians, and support Black dignity” by breaking down structural barriers that prevent marginalized groups from obtaining critical information in times of crisis.

Read the full article about amplifying BIPOC Voices by Brandon Dorfman at Generocity.