Youth Empowerment Television at The Fortune Society

WNET Channel 13's  publis affairs program, MetroFocus, broadcasted Christopher Padmore's film on July 10, 2018 and interviewed Melvin McCray, Director of the Digital Media Training Program. 

Jack Ford, host of MetroFocus, with Melvin McCray at the Tish WNET Studios at Lincoln Center.

Youth Empowerment Television at the Fortune Society was launched in October of 2017.  It's a 22-week video journalism program that trains men and women ages 18 to 24 to become citizen journalists. The goal is to teach participants in Fortune's Alternative To Incarceration Program to analyze the social, political and economic forces operating in their communities. By doing so, we hope to increase the success of their re-entry into society. Our students create thoughtful, well-reasoned video news programs composed of history based feature stories and news stories about the world in which they live.

Once trained our students produced insightful news stories with the ability to undertake a critical examination of current issues through research, reporting, interviewing experts and the key people affected.  These stories are being distributed through broadcast outlets, social media and the Internet. By creating short non-fiction films, the citizen journalists of YET play a part in the dismantling of racism, removing the stigma of being under the control of the criminal justice system, while advocating for a just society.  Our YET journalists worked on stories that have an impact on their lives. Among them, the disparities in the public perception of white-collar versus street crime, the history of black businesses in America, how to successfully launch a hip-hop music career, how to make it in the field of jewelry design, the history of the Bronx, New York, how to make smart choices in food consumption in the midst of food deserts, and the history of Queens, New York.

The YET program is funded by grants from Trinity Church Wall Street and the Collegiate Churches of New York.


The following six films were also produced by Youth Empowerment Television reporters at the Fortune Society.

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