2011-12 Recipients Brimstone Award for Applied Storytelling

The Brimstone Award for Applied Storytelling supports a model storytelling project that is service-oriented, based in a community or organization, and to some extent replicable in other places and situations. We are confident that the four projects above will inspire excellence in applied storytelling work and communicate to new audiences the humanitarian possibilities of storytelling.


Karen Abdul-Malik (Queen Nur)
The SCATTS (Sustaining Culture and Traditions Through Storytelling) Project

This is a series of seven folk art workshops presented by master folk-teaching artists one day a week for ten weeks. The series concludes with a concert and exhibition. The goals are to create a nationally marketable arts-in-practice community model for storytellers and other folk artists, to establish new opportunities for social impact, to use storytelling and folk arts as a tool for the community’s voice on social justice issues, to build community partnerships and collaborative arts practices, to forge intergenerational relationships, to create a documentary and to ignite change.


Gwen Griffith, Model Forest Policy Program
“Community Stories in a Changing Climate”

The goal is to create a team of local Climate Solutions University: Forest and Water Strategies (CSU) story presenters who will use storytelling to convey the urgency of climate adaptation measure needed to protect rural forests and water. This interactive distance-learning curriculum will train communities to assess local climate risks and opportunities and develop climate resilient communities by protecting their natural resources and economic vitality. The aim is to bring the power of storytelling to the CSU communities, 12 now and 6 per year thereafter.


Lenora Ucko, StoriesWork
“Intergenerational Storytelling for Seniors and Ex-offenders” (those reentering life outside prison)

The goal is to build trust and understanding between seniors and ex-offenders to benefit each group and the community. The project will facilitate the reentry of ex-offenders into society through improved empowerment and self-esteem, and will result in a manual of instructions for future use in Durham, North Carolina, and elsewhere. The project provides a model that, with instructional training from StoriesWork, can be adapted in other cities. In addition to Durham, the manual will be distributed to New Jersey headquarters, Community Education Centers, and Project Return in New Orleans.


Paul VanDeCarr
“Storytelling and Social Change: Strategies for Grantmakers” (S&SC)

This guide will include (1) Recent history of the rise of narrative strategies for social change; (2) Theories of change behind narrative strategies; (3) Framework or typology for how narrative strategies are used; (4) Short case studies of six to eight oraganizations working in different media, regions, issue areas, and communities; (5) Recommendations to funders on how to incorporate narrative strategies into their programs; (6) Tips for applied storytellers about grant makers’ expectations and requirements; and (7) Resource listings.  The report will be a useful, ground-breaking guide that will benefit grant makers and grant seekers.

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