|“The program has changed the course of my life. I never thought I would be a journalist. It’s about being able to impact people in a positive way. And so not being able to come down here would mean that a lot of the hope, a lot of the purpose that I have, will be gone.
– Uncuffed Participant Greg Eskridge at San Quentin State Prison
KALW teaches audio journalism, storytelling, and podcasting to people in California prisons. Participants develop job skills, express their humanity, and inspire change. Their stories air on KALW, in-prison TV and tablet systems, and on the award-winning podcast Uncuffed, which has been featured in The New York Times, Snap Judgment, and other outlets. In August, Uncuffed suddenly lost over $660,000 that the state had intended to award the program over two years.
We need $80,000 in urgent bridge funding to sustain Uncuffed through the end of 2022. Without ongoing support, we could be forced to lay off staff and cancel our programs indefinitely. With those funds, we can continue working in the prisons, release the remaining episodes of Uncuffed Season 2, and pursue long-term sources of funding. Over the long term, we are seeking to raise an annual budget of $500,000 per year to continue our work at San Quentin and Solano prisons, and to complete an exciting expansion we had planned: bringing our program to the California Institution for Women (CIW)
DONATE HERE or write a check to KALW Public Media, Inc. at 500 Mansell St. San Francisco, CA 94134 with "Uncuffed" in the memo line.
Since 2017, KALW Public Media has been funded by the California’s Arts In Corrections (AIC) program to teach audio journalism and podcasting at San Quentin and Solano State Prison. Different state grants will allow us to start a new Broadcast DJ Training Program at Solano, and a re-entry program in the coming year. Many Uncuffed graduates go on to careers in media, journalism, and advocacy.
On August 11, AIC abruptly rescinded all of the contracts it had intended to award, due to errors in their decision-making process. That means that our current podcasting programs at Solano and San Quentin ran out of money on August 31. AIC has released a new call for proposals, but this process will take months and is not guaranteed. As of now, individual donations like yours are our only source of support for our current podcasting work.
For more information or other offers of support, please contact Uncuffed Program Director Eli Wirtschafter at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for helping us grow through this unexpected challenge.