BLU takes a look at Black America by showing the diversity within the community through storytelling
Black Like Us takes a close look at Black America by showing the diversity within the community through thought-provoking commentary and stories from a variety of Black perspectives.
Since we launched in 2021 we’ve written nearly 40 stories and produced six videos focused on the diversity of Black people in America including interviewing Dr. K. Renee Horton, a Black rocket scientist working for NASA, and hanging out with Black and Camping founder Lixie Jane as she shared her love for the outdoors and reasons for wanting to create more inclusive spaces for Black people to join her. We also shared the stories of a Black opera singer, an urban cyclist, a beekeeper, and a hiker to list a few.
Support for Black movements that are not engulfed in social justice issues is hard. For some reason, the financial investment for health stories that show that our experience is not monolithic just isn’t there.
We want to expand our work and we need support to make it happen.
What We Need
Transparency is critical to our success. This is where every dollar goes.
We will produce six video stories and 12 written articles. We are raising money for travel costs associated with content development and news reporting. On average video production can cost $1,500 per video not including travel expenses for our team which can cost an estimated $2,000 per project.
While preparing for this campaign our motorhome sponsor has to push the partnership to 2023 but this important work can’t wait. The majority of this campaign is to purchase a used motorhome to support our work as our founder travel’s across the nation to collect, tell and publish these stories.
We are raising money for travel costs associated with content development and news reporting. On average video production can cost from $1,500 to $2,000 per video, not including travel expenses for our team and developing written content for the platform.
Funding will also help support the purchase of a used motorhome ranging between $45,000 to $50,000 to support our work as our founder travels across the nation to tell stories.
What You Get
You will be listed as a community partner during a monthly update for funders, community members, and our audience. We will also give occasional updates during our Facebook Lives and our other social media platforms.
Supporters who contribute $100 or more will be added to our Black Like Us premium subscriptions for a year.
In addition to the above, supporters who contribute $500 or more will be added to our private Black Like Us account and have access to behind-the-scenes footage, interviews, and commentary and you will receive various Black Like Us swag showing your support for our work. You will also be able to suggest stories and places we should visit.
Break it down for folks in more detail:
- We are raising money for travel costs associated with content development and news reporting. On average video production can cost $1,500 per video not including travel expenses for our team.
- Funding will also help support the purchase of a used motorhome ranging between $45,000 to $60,000 to support our work as our founder travel’s across the nation to tell stories.
Risks & Challenges
- Black storytelling initiatives are not easily supported if they are not tied to social justice issues which makes it a challenge to restore the Black narrative in America. We are challenged to be creative when finding funding for our work.
- This is a very ambitious task. With the additional costs of insurance and fuel, which this campaign will not cover. The Black Like Us team is continuing to pursue sponsorships to scale the project. Currently, 18 stories will be created with the ambitious $65,000 campaign goal but the project can scale.
About Jiquanda Johnson
Jiquanda Johnson is an Emmy Award-winning producer and award-winning journalist who founded Brown Impact Media Group, an independent publishing company focused on developing media products in underserved and marginalized communities. The company kicked off its efforts in 2017 with FlintBeat.com, a news website focused solely on Flint, Mich., where Jiquanda grew up.
She kicked off Black Like Us in 2021 with Facebook now known as Meta focusing on the Black experience in America and the diversity of Black people.
She serves as publisher of Flint Beat and has more than 20 years of experience in journalism, including working for MLive Media Group, Fox 46 in North Carolina, NBC25’s affiliate station in the Flint area, The Detroit News, Pull Magazine, and Tween Girl Style Magazine. In addition, her work has appeared in Belt Magazine, National Geographic, FRONTLINE, The Guardian, and Spotlight on Poverty. She has also served on panels focused on local journalism in underserved and marginalized communities and discussions related to media startups for many events and organizations, including The Aspen Institute, LION Publishers, Solutions Journalism Network, the National Association of Black Journalists, Online News Association, ONA Local, the John S. Knight Fellowship at Stanford’s journalism series, the Chautauqua Institute, and the Society of Environmental Journalists.
Her efforts in Flint also include launching News Movement, a youth journalism program. News Movement teaches Flint-area youth various newsroom skills, including writing, graphic design, photography, and videography.
She serves on boards for LION Publishers and 20 Books Inc., a literacy organization based in Detroit, Mich. She also sits on the Flint & Genesee Literacy Network Committee and Community Action Council in Flint.
Other Ways You Can Help
Some people just can’t contribute, but that doesn’t mean they can’t help:
- Support our work by becoming a premium subscriber.
- Purchase merchandise. All proceeds go to support Black Like Us.