To create a just and pluralist society, we need to reimagine systems and transform culture

Throughout America’s history, the most transformative political advances—from slavery abolition to Reconstruction, “I Have a Dream” to the election of Barack Obama, the DREAMers, Love Is Love, and the Movement for Black Lives—have been achieved by organizers, artists, and movements working together to awaken and harness people’s deep yearning to belong in a pluralist America. In each case, the cultural tug of war between belonging and exclusion sparked a portal moment—a cracking open of the public imagination—through which we can see a glimmer of the pluralist nation we could become.

Our nation is now in the midst of another such breakthrough: a once-in-a-generation moment when tens of millions of Americans are actively choosing to meet at the riverside, wade into the water, and begin the hard and delicate work of belonging together in a just society. With the 2020 election behind us, the COVID-19 pandemic challenging us to recommit to our civic purpose, and the killing of Black people by police still fueling widespread demands for structural change, important questions are moving to center stage: How will the American people respond to this call for transformation? Will we retreat back into the habits of exclusion and violence that stain America’s past, or will we step boldly on to the path towards a pluralist future?

The Fund

The Becoming America Fund brings together entertainment, philanthropic, and social justice leaders to immerse millions of people in a galvanizing story of the pluralist nation we are becoming. The Fund supports artists, creative companies, social justice organizations, cultural organizations, consumer researchers, fandom organizers, and cultural strategists who are calling on Americans to reject the exclusionary systems that define our country’s past and present, and embrace the transformative ideas that can shape our future.

Developed in collaboration with hundreds of field partners over a two-year period, Becoming America centers the innovation of Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), immigrant, and Muslim creators, organizers, strategists, and influencers, especially those who are women, trans, nonbinary, queer, and disabled.

The Narrative Network

Becoming America supports content production and distribution projects intended for mass audiences, including digital fiction and nonfiction videos, podcasts, multiplatform story experiences, games, pop songs and music videos, culture change campaigns, fandom activations, and direct investments in artists and social movement leaders who are helping audiences expand their imagination of what’s possible. These projects are bolstered by the Fund’s support of projects focused on audience research and critical field infrastructure that encourages collaboration and coordination among artists and social movements.

Meet Our…

2022 Narrative Network Grantees

  • AAPI Digital Influencers Campaign Run AAPI will organize top AAPI digital influencers to make educational and compelling graphics; host a number of in-person and virtual community convenings; and ultimately, mobilize young AAPI to exercise their right to vote in another critical election year.
    Grantee: RUN AAPI
  • ASALI: Power of the Pollinators From 22-year-old global climate activist Maya Penn, a three-time TED speaker, artist, animator, writer, director, and Simon & Schuster author, comes ASALI: Power of The Pollinators, an animated action-adventure short film focused on climate justice and eco-anxiety. A colorful group of pollinators and an environmental scientist unravel a trail of secrets, and must discover if they can save their home from a monstrous and deadly force. This film is being produced through Maya’s own company Upenndo! Productions. In her previous work, Maya made history when she was commissioned to create an animated film for the opening of the first ever digital report to congress, which was to get an American museum of Women’s History built in Washington.
    Grantee: Upenndo! Productions
  • The Anti-Trans Hate Machine: A Plot Against Equality TransLash Media will launch Season 2 of The Anti-Trans Hate Machine: A Plot Against Equality, a podcast series unpacking the cultural justifications for anti-trans legislation, and the way in which fringe arguments in digital culture ultimately influenced pop culture to drive anti-trans hostility.
    Grantee: TransLash Media
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  • BLACKNESS UNBOUND AI for the People will publicly launch BLACKNESS UNBOUND, a new, short interview-style video steeped in Afrofuturist visuals and themes, to help spark the imagination and create dialogue among Black communities on how technology can support and serve, rather than surveil and target.
    Grantee: AI for the People
  • Broccoli City Festival Broccoli City Music Festival and Broccoli Conference is an open air festival/conference in Washington DC hailed by Blavity as “ vibrantly contributing not just to the city’s culture, but political voice.” Each year, the festival gathers more than 100,000 BIPOC millennial and Gen Z fans for a celebration of music, art, food, culture and community service. Featuring artists like Childish Gambino, Migos, Cardi B, Miguel, Nipsey Hussle, Future and others, Broccoli City will offer three stages of music and discourse, wellness activities, brand activations, a small business marketplace and experiential art.
    Grantee: Broccoli City
  • Building a Better Digital Narrative for Immigrants Define American will produce compelling social video content, based on years of research, to shift the conversation about immigration for audiences exposed to anti-immigration narratives.
    Grantee: Define American
  • The Colorism Project “The Colorism Project” is a media campaign and toolkit that seeks to address, expose, and end the discriminatory racial dynamics of colorism in Hollywood through historical facts, pop culture analysis, and action steps for both industry insiders and consumers.
    Grantee: The League
  • Culture Surge: 2022 Culture Surge will coordinate over two dozen leading influencers, artists, cultural strategists, and movement leaders to amplify a shared narrative leading up to the 2022 Election, anchored by pop culture for social change field members Harness, The League, The Center for Cultural Power, and IllumiNative.
    Grantee: Culture Surge
  • DENIM From artist, rapper, and director TT the Artist (Dark City Beneath the Beat, Netflix), DENIM is a fantastical imagining of masculinity and femininity that illuminates queer people of color and LGBTQIA+ creatives in fashion, beauty, music, film, and visual art. In a world filled with uncertainty, this digital docuseries will take viewers into the worlds of diverse creatives, showcasing how they use art as a form of activism and self-discovery.
    Grantee: Artistland Studios
  • Domestic Worker Digital Influencer Program NDWA will train a cohort of domestic worker leaders to build and grow their social media brands. Supported by NDWA Influencer Engagement Manager, Ayanna Albertson-Gay (378k+ followers on TikTok), this program will enable workers to use their own voices to creatively engage audiences. NDWA will also partner with a diverse range of digital influencers to bolster narratives on abundance, care and pluralism.
    Grantee: National Domestic Workers Alliance
  • Finding Tamika Social Impact Campaign Released in March 2022 on Audible, ‘Finding Tamika’ is an Audible Original series about Black women and girls who go missing and overlooked by society. Produced by Color Farm Media and SBH Productions, the series is a neo-noir, true crime drama. Color Farm co-founder, Erika Alexander, created, co-wrote and narrates the series about Tamika Huston, a 24-year-old Black woman from Spartanburg, South Carolina who went missing in 2004. Her case became a rallying cry for other missing Black women in America and led to a growing demand to expose a system that ignores missing girls and women of color. 
    Grantee: Color Farm Media
  • Going Native It’s 2022 and too many people believe that Native Americans still live in teepees. From award-winning writer, performer, and enrolled Cowlitz Indian Tribal Member Joey Clift (Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Nerdist, DreamWorks, Netflix) and the creative agency Moore+Associates, Going Native is a digital animated shorts comedy series about common stereotypes and microaggressions made towards Native people.
    Grantee: Joey Clift and Moore + Associates
  • Good Relatives (Working Title) With the 2020 census reflecting an 86% increase in people reporting Native identity, the concept of indigeneity and belonging has greatly expanded in the 21st Century and is fundamental to building power for Native peoples. A digital series will examine and amplify the immense diversity and complexity of Native identity, taking audiences on a learning journey about the diaspora resulting from colonization, while celebrating Black, Jewish, Asian, Muslim, Latinx, White-presenting, and LGBTQ2S Natives.
    Grantee: IllumiNative
  • Grief, Collected From The Mash-Up Americans (To See Each Other, Sunstorm) comes “Grief, Collected,” a podcast series hosted by journalist Amy S. Choi that will bring to life, with deeply personal narration and shared joys and pains, the human condition that is grief. Along with guests from around the country and across the divides, she will ask a fundamental question: Can we change the shape of our future by processing our past?
    Grantee: The Mash-Up Americans
  • Harness Civic Engagement Activations From spring to fall 2022, Harness is planning large-scale activations to increase civic participation for BIPOC youth (18-35), including national televised PSAs and broadcasts, street art, concerts in various key states and localities, a widely publicized bus tour with influential artists, and their Ride to the Polls campaign.
    Grantee: Harness
  • Hometown Labs There is tremendous power in meeting your audience where they are: in their hometowns. Hometown Labs is a nationwide project that encourages civic engagement by leveraging local, and in some cases, hyper-local, culture, with a particular focus on local artists and influencers.
    Grantee: The League
  • The Humans who Feed Us Modeled after popular Instagram photo blog “Humans of New York,” “The Humans Who Feed Us” is a narrative portrait project living both on social media and in restaurants, stores, universities, and food festivals around the country, seeking to humanize and make visible the millions of immigrants who work in the food supply chain, and uplifting their stories of strength, resilience, joy, and hope.
    Grantee: Justice for Migrant Women
  • Imagine Justice Society At select concerts featuring performing artist and co-founder, Common — Imagine Justice will launch “Imagine Justice Society,” a voter engagement campaign to amplify the importance and impact of local elections in ending mass incarceration. Imagine Justice will partner with local organizations and artists to produce pop-up activations and immersive experiences of what a future without mass incarceration can look like for our communities through visual storytelling and original augmented reality content (videos, artwork, music, etc.) and promote high-profile decarceration policies on the 2022 ballot.
    Grantee: Imagine Justice
  • Immigrant Cookoff! (Working Title) The Immigrant Cookoff YouTube series will feature engaging novice chefs in the realest immigrant cookoff since the pandemic forced families to cancel the family cookout. Each episode will highlight family recipes of dishes with shared roots, personal storytelling, and the best judges: family! The Immigrant Cookoff will continue to build a new immigrant culture driven by immigrants, strengthening immigrant identity and inspiring collective transformation towards true racial justice.
    Grantee: United We Dream
  • #iVoted Festival 2022 Electoral margins of victory are frequently the size of a concert venue. By booking talent per the data of what fans are actively listening to, #iVoted Festival is meeting fans and potential voters where they already are. #iVotedFestival 2022’s election night webcast features events around the country from 300+ artists and harnesses the power of music and entertainment to increase voter turnout among young people and fanbases in critical states across the nation. The price of admission? Just a selfie from outside your polling place or at home with your blank and unmarked ballot. Ineligible voters RSVP by letting the group know which artist they’re most excited to check out.
    Grantee: Project I Voted Inc
  • Joy to the Polls 2022 Joy To the Polls is a non-partisan tour of artists, DJs, activists and community members, focused on doing just as the name suggests–bringing joy to the polling place. This time, with a goal to increase voter turnout. Joy To The Polls will encourage, excite and empower people across the country to feel an expansive possibility with their vote, implementing strategies to entice people to get to the polls with Joy To The Polls Playlists and keep the energy high once they’re there through non-partisan pop-up concerts at select polling locations during the primary and general elections. Voting is a vibe and we are making it something to dance about.
    Grantee: Center for Working Families Fund
  • The Littletons All In The Family” meets “South Park” in this satirical, stop-motion animation web series about a middle-class, middle-American family navigating current cultural and social issues. Created by comedian Melissa Samuels, directed and edited by her husband, Adam Parker, the series is voiced by their real-life family. Produced by Wake Up And Vote, The Littletons aims to entertain, inform and engage the Hesitants audience.
    Grantee: Wake Up & Vote, SLED Inc., Melissa Samuels
  • Micro-Influencers Who Care: Amplifying Narratives and Building Our Base The Care Influencer Program will identify and partner with 15 digital micro influencers of color to collaborate with Caring Across Generations via TikTok on a range of creative rapid response social media activations.
    Grantee: Caring Across Generations
  • Movement to the Ballot Box  Fueled by authentic and compelling storytellers, creatives, and artists, Movement to the Ballot Box uses visual art, photos, music, comic strips, and other creative digital content to mobilize young BIPOC, trans, immigrant, and/or disabled voters.
    Grantee: The Center for Cultural Power
  • Mad Different: Black Girl Cornrows “Black Girl Cornrows,” the first single and music video of the Mad Different visual album, is a project by musical artist Lachi. Told through Lachi’s personal experience as a Blind Black woman, Mad Different amplifies the realities in disability culture, while celebrating Black disabled intersectionality and exploring accessibility as an art form.
    Grantee: Lachi Music LLC
  • Murf Meyer is Self-Medicated Murf Meyer is Self-Medicated is a multi-platform series launched in 2020 and hosted by Murf Meyer—a comedian, former heroin addict, and current alcoholic—born and raised in Luzerne County, PA. Murf uses humor and storytelling to lift stigma and provide insight into his (and others’) experience with drug addiction, the war on drugs, and the harm reduction movement.
    Grantees: Murf Meyer and Moore+Associates
  • Muslim Girls DTF: Discuss Their Faith Building on their previous success as winners of the 2020 Roddenberry Impact Award and Yes, And … Laughter Lab, comedians Atheer Yacoub and Aizzah Fatima will produce Muslim Girls DTF: Discuss Their Faith, a digital comedy series where an all American-Muslim female cast perform about topics that “plague Muslim women such as sex, pork, and body hair.”
    Grantees: Atheer Yacoub and Aizzah Fatima
  • Normal Ain’t Normal Normal Ain’t Normal is a scripted digital series exploring the struggles, absurdities, and surprising possibilities of working-class people navigating the strange, almost-but-not-quite-post-COVID terrain across the U.S. Co-produced by and co-starring Rosario Dawson, the series also features performances from D’Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai (Reservation Dogs) and Martin Sensmeier (Yellowstone). Following four colorful characters who offer an intimate glimpse inside our country’s growing fault lines of race, class, and extreme inequality, Normal Ain’t Normal boldly and irreverently challenges what is “normal” – and what should be normal – in a healthy society.
    Grantee: Offsides Productions
  • The Prince Syllabus Produced by scholar and cultural historian Zaheer Ali of The Lawrenceville School’s Hutchins Institute for Social Justice, “The Prince Syllabus” is an interactive digital platform that will expand and deepen how fans and scholars understand and deploy the work of the musical artist Prince Rogers Nelson to cultivate pluralist identity, culture, and fandom.
    Grantee: Hutchins Institute for Social Justice
  • Radiotopia Presents: My Mother Made Me The podcast series My Mother Made Me (Radiotopia Presents; summer 2022) will explore the relationship between award-winning writer and National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Jason Reynolds and his mother, Isabell. Through interviews and intimate conversation, they wax poetic about what Reynolds was taught as a child as it pertains to ambition, family, and purpose, and how those teachings have evolved with the changing tides of their lives. It’s a love letter to their connection, an homage to parent-child friendship, and a testament to how growth can be perpetual. Part of the Radiotopia podcast network from PRX, Radiotopia Presents is a podcast feed and home for new limited series from independent creators.
    Grantee: PRX, Inc.
  • Reimagining The Beautiful Game in North America In the lead up to the World Cup 2022, Amplifier will commission original AR-activated artworks inspired by a diverse range of soccer players and fans. Distributed in partnership with Common Goal and seven pro soccer teams during Pride month, this art will ignite the imagination about pluralism and LGBTQ justice within soccer fandoms.
    Grantee: Amplifier
  • Searching for Wakanda Drawing on the people and projects that embody Black euphoria, imagination, freedom, and creativity, Searching for Wakanda is a “for fandom by fandom” visual podcast series that showcases the ways in which leaders in multiple sectors are inspired by the Black Panther storyworld and invite them to imagine the future of their work in relationship to the world of Wakanda.
    Grantees: Intelligent Mischief and Picture Motion
  • Sell/Buy/Date Foment Productions is launching the impact campaign for Sell/Buy/Date, the hybrid documentary film that follows Tony Award-winning performer, writer, and comedian Sarah Jones—and the multicultural characters she’s known for—as she explores her own personal relationship to one of the most relevant issues in our current cultural climate: the sex industry, and the surprisingly diverse range of people whose lives it touches.
    Grantee: Foment Productions
  • TRAИƧA: Red Hot Transcends “TRAИƧA:Red Hot Transcends” is an album and multimedia campaign featuring songs by high-profile and emerging gender-expansive artists that are both love letters to the Trans community and cultural bridges to those who may not yet relate to their gender as a space for exploration and evolution.
    Grantee: Red Hot Organization
  • The UnCommons The UnCommons, a digital comic series with over 2.5 million readers, tells the story of Iris, a young West African Black woman who must gather a group of outsiders to form a diverse team of heroes in order to save the world from an upcoming catastrophe predicted by her ancestors. Through their journey, they learn that in order to save the world, they also have to save each other. In 2022, The UnCommons will both relaunch the series, release new comics, and organize an UnCommons fandom to take flight.
    Grantee: Weird Enough Productions
  • Win Black Since the 2020 election cycle, bad actors nationally and abroad have been interfering with the election process in the United States and targeting Black voters with misinformation and disinformation to suppress their freedom. Through their hub, Win Black will convene movement leaders to amplify branded content that activates communities of color towards a shared vision for Black liberation.
    Grantee: The Truth Fund at Amalgamated Foundation

Pluralist Visionaries

  • 2022 Pluralist Visionaries (in formation)
    • Saket Soni will be launching a publicity campaign for his new book, American Promise (Algonquin Press/Hachette), an epic true story about a hurricane, forced labor, and immigrant freedom; including speaking engagements, media and op-ed placements, and potential launch of a podcast connected to his work on the frontlines of climate disaster.
      Grantee: Saket Soni / Resilience Force
    • Farai Chideya is re-centering data to move women of color from the margins to the center, as part of her work on the podcast Our Body Politic. In some ways, Black women and all women of color are canaries in democracy’s coal mine — predictive of future events that affect a majority of the American public. Farai will seek new ways of blending lived experience and qualitative data into actionable insights that can help save and expand the lives of Black women and women of color more broadly.
      Grantee: Farai Chideya
  • Evolutionaries (in partnership with CAA Foundation)
    • George Goehl will be producing the second season of his podcast “To See Each Other” and a new book focused on rural communities, including low-income white people, in order to tell the story of what is possible when we reach beyond the choir and invite more people into the project of building the next, more just version of America.
      Grantee: George Goehl/Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement
    • LaTosha Brown is developing a multimedia project that utilizes song, speeches, photography, and visuals to advance new narratives rooted in culture, the arts and the love of humanity.
      Grantee: LaTosha Brown/Truth Speaks Innovation Foundation
    • Cristina Jimenez will be releasing her first book, confronting the long history of white supremacy and anti-Blackness that has shaped the modern-day American immigration system.
      Grantee: Cristina Jimenez/United We Dream Network
    • Crystal Echohawk will be producing a podcast that follows the stories of tribes, activists and families who are actively working today to investigate the abuses that occurred at boarding schools in the United States, where Indigenous children were separated from their families and communities, leading to cycles of generational trauma.
      Grantee: Crystal Echo Hawk/IllumiNative

      See full announcement

2020-21 Narrative Network Grantees

  • Abundance Artist and Cultural Strategist Amber J. Phillips wrote and produced Abundance, a short film in three parts— “Fat,” “Angry,” and “Queer”—that explores what it means to exist in this world as a Black, fat, queer person.
    Grantee: Amber Abundance Productions
  • Amplifier AR Launched as part of the Every Day Is Indigenous Peoples’ Day campaign, this activist-driven augmented reality app transforms 2-D posters, stickers, and murals into art that comes to life to deliver a call to action.
    Grantee: Amplifier
  • American We Real-time audience research between August and November 2020 tracking how pop culture content was informing the pluralist or anti-pluralist instincts of mass audiences.
    Grantee: Metafo.re
  • ARRAY LEAP The Law Enforcement Accountability Project is a propulsive fund dedicated to supporting artists and empowering activists as they pursue narrative change around the police abuse of Black people.
    Grantee: ARRAY Alliance
  • Artists Advancing Cultural Change Cohort Three artists of Middle Eastern and North African descent will develop new pieces in mediums of their choice in 2021 that reflect their own experiences, illustrating the breadth and richness of MENA communities.
    Grantee: Noor Theatre
  • Becoming America Anthology Series Comprising three different stories from three different writers rooms in different parts of the country, each exploring the humanity of life under duress, pain, and difference, the Becoming America Anthology series was released on What We Seee’s Facebook page in October 2020.
    Grantee: Break the Room
  • Becoming America Festival A three-day virtual experience that took place from October 30 to November 1, 2020, across multiple social media platforms, with the goal of inspiring and engaging young people to vote.
    Grantee: The Soze Foundation
  • BLKTrans*+Whole Created a IGTV gathering place for storytelling and practice featuring Black Trans* healing, arts, and spiritual justice practitioners.
    Grantee: Acorn’s Center for Restoration and Freedom
  • Bringing the Movement to the Ballot Box Supported the commissioning of authentic and compelling storytellers to create work that helps mobilize young BIPOC, trans, immigrant, and/or disabled voters.
    Grantee: The Center for Cultural Power
  • Culture Surge Developed a critical coordinating infrastructure for the culture change field (artist, influencers, strategists, and social justice movements) in advance of the November election.
    Grantees: Harness | Marya Bangee, The League | Tracy Sturdivant, Center for Cultural Power | Favianna Rodriguez, and IllumiNative | Crystal Echo Hawk
  • Daemon Cards Developing and testing a new collectible card game as part of multiplatform, pop fantasy franchise that offers gateways into new worlds.
    Grantee: GoGo Co | Filmmakers and television producers/writers Angela Robinson and Alexandra Martinez Kondracke
  • Essential Americans Producing micro-videos and a campaign aimed at contributing to a more expansive and imaginative concept of “belonging” in America in partnership with Co-Executive Producer Angela Bassett. The first video, “For Armetta” was released in March 2021.
    Grantee: Moore + Associates
  • Every Vote Counts – A Celebration of Democracy In partnership with Harness, Global Citizen developed a nationwide television and digital broadcast special, which aired on CBS and on a range of streaming platforms on October 29th, 2020, and was co-produced by Alicia Keys, America Ferrera, Kerry Washington, Eva Longoria, and many others.
    Grantee: Global Citizen
  • Fierce song and music video Released in January 2021, Fierce is a new dance single dedicated to the trans community. The song and upcoming music video are produced by Grammy-nominated Anthony Preston and features artists Angelica Ross, Ultra Nate and Mila Jam.
    Grantee: A2 Productions | Grammy-nominated producer Anthony Preston, featuring artists Ultra Nate and Mila Jam
  • GIF internet takeover Curated and developed hundreds of gifs intended to help people share the idea that that we must cry no when we see injustice and build towards a new future.
    Grantee: Into Action Lab
  • Hard to Swallow Nigerian immigrant, chef, and writer Tunde Wey explores the social and political implications of food consumption and production around the globe in this television series that will launch in late 2021.
    Grantee: Run It Up Productions
  • Inside Stagger Lee Developing a podcast for a late 2021 launch that traces and reimagines the story of Stagger Lee, the archetypal big-and-bad black superhero, one of the most celebrated yet unknown figures in American mythology.
    Grantee: PRX | Showrunner: Will Abramson, Yours Truly Creative | Co-Creators and Writers: Hanif Abdurraqib and Zandria F. Robinson
  • Joy to the Polls A voter initiative that mobilized musicians and artists to perform roving concerts at polling sites across the country to motivate every single person to stay in line.
    Grantee: Frontline Election Defenders
  • “Latinas Make a Difference” Tour From the economy and jobs to education, immigration, health and wellness, and more, She Se Puede gathered a diverse group of powerhouse Latinas to discuss these important topics on a week-long virtual tour leading up to the 2020 election.
    Grantee: She Se Puede
  • May 19th Project An AAPI Solidarity social media content distribution campaign aimed at advancing the narrative of solidarity during May, AAPI Heritage Month.
    Grantee: Walking Iris Media
  • The Narrative Engine Real-time audience research measuring how pop culture content is reaching and affecting audiences.
    Grantee: futurePerfect Lab
  • NationX. Launched an immersive, multiplatform storyworld project centered around a fictional society established in 1325 when a fleet of African traders sailing across the Atlantic goes off course.
    Grantee: 13exp | Lead Designers: Aisha Shillingford and Terry Michael (Intelligent Mischief) | Creative Team: Shawn Taylor, Nazareth Hassan, Geoffrey Jackson Scott
  • “912? What’s Your White Emergency?” A digital comedic video featuring Sarah Cooper, W. Kamau Bell and more, announcing a new emergency number, just for white people.
    Grantee: Offsides Productions
  • “Please Explain” YouTube Series Define American teamed up with four influencers to create a series of explainer videos, targeting important audiences on YouTube on topics ranging from climate change to the border wall.
    Grantee: Define American
  • The People’s Inauguration Created in partnership with Amplifier, The Revolutionary Love Project, The Soze Foundation, Dream Corps, and Sounds True, The People’s Inauguration called on everyday citizens to commit to the work of healing, reimagining, and rebuilding our country.
    Grantees: The Revolutionary Love Project, Amplifier, and The Soze Foundation
  • Radical Kindness Comedy Writers Room Built a writers room to develop digital pop culture comedy projects centering the role of hope and the potential of human possibility.
    Grantee: American University/Center for Media and Social Impact
  • Radical Kindness Project’s “Live Kindness Comedy Show” The Center for Media and Social Impact will develop a “Live Kindness Comedy Show” as part of its Radical Kindness Initiative, which merges creative comedy and grassroots organizing to bring people together through laughter.
    Grantee: American University/Center for Media and Social Impact
  • Recovery Recess Organized artists and micro-influencers during the two-week Congressional recess to advance narratives and build public urgency for the Thrive Agenda, a blueprint for the future that tackles the multiple crises we face—economic inequality, public health, racism, and climate change.
    Grantee: Center for Working Families
  • Starfish Accelerator Storyworld Launch Mass audience engagement and early fandom creation for two original pop culture projects:
    * Laying Flowers.:.Setting Fires (cinematic poem from Amir Sulaiman)
    * God Bless the Promise Land (a multiplatform story universe from artist and writer Vanessa Benton)
    Grantee: Starfish Accelerator
  • #TheTimeIsNow Successfully changing—after years of pressure—the racist name of the Washington NFL football team, and forging bonds between Indigenous and Black communities exploring the legacy of white supremacy, including the issue of racist mascots, in order to build a shared vision for the nation’s future.
    Grantee: IllumiNative
  • “To See Each Other” podcast An audio documentary series with host George Goehl that complicates the narrative about rural Americans in our most misunderstood, and often abandoned, communities.
    Grantee: People’s Action
  • “Traveling the Interstitium with Octavia Butler” Created by five groundbreaking Black artists: Stephanie Dinkins, Yance Ford, Terence Nance, Sophia Nahli Allison, and Idris Brewster, this interactive WebXR experience transports audiences on a journey of imagination and self-discovery inspired by Octavia Butler’s work.
    Grantee: The Guild of Future Architects
  • 20th Anniversary of 9/11 Creating a new narrative for the 20th anniversary of 9/11 by partnering with WikiEducation to train 20 diverse scholars to update and correct the highest trafficked Wiki pages about the September 11 attacks.
  • Grantee: Rethink Media
  • “We Will Emerge” Essays Four visionary authors – poet Natalie Diaz, journalist Jean Guerrero, novelist Laila Lalami and disability rights advocate Alice Wong – spoke directly to voters around the country in advance of the 2020 U.S. election.
    Grantee: PEN America
  • “What to My People is the Fourth of July?” A digital video narrated by original Hamilton star Daveed Diggs, inspired by Frederick Douglass’s historic speech, “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?”
    Grantee: Offsides Productions
  • 2020-21 Pluralist Visionaries
    • Ai-jen Poo
    • Alicia Garza
    • Elle Hearns
    • Eric K. Ward
    • Imara Jones
    • Paola Mendoza
    • Zahra Noorbakash
    • Maytha Alhassen

*This list is updated as of May 2022. Stay tuned for updates on new grantees.

COVER IMAGE: As a Black woman, artist and trans rights activist, Shea Diamond elicits joyous pride in our fluid selves though dance hits such as  “I Am America,”  and holds our collective need to mourn, heal, and reconnect with ballads such as “Seen It All.”  Her songs reflect the power that pop culture has to expand public imagination, and that’s why we are so honored that Shea agreed to be featured as our Becoming America 2022 cover artist. 

The Story Portal

The Becoming America Narrative Network is working to seed a new narrative ocean in the United States, one that visualizes and normalizes the norms of pluralist culture—the hard and delicate work of belonging together—as the heartbeat of a just society. We invite you to immerse yourself in this content by visiting the Becoming America story portal.

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