LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 15, 2020) — WUKY is partnering with StoryCorps, the national nonprofit organization dedicated to recording, preserving and sharing the stories of people of all backgrounds and beliefs, to launch StoryCorps Connect.
The platform is free and allows people to conduct and record StoryCorps interviews with loved ones across generations remotely. WUKY encourages residents of Central Kentucky to utilize this technology to connect with loved ones during the COVID-19 pandemic and, in the process, contribute to the creation of a unique first-person historical record of this unprecedented crisis.
“WUKY is excited to be partnering once again with StoryCorps during these unprecedented times,” WUKY General Manager Tom Godell said. “WUKY is dedicated to ensuring that the voices of Central Kentucky are heard, as well as values the exceptional ongoing work of StoryCorps.”
StoryCorps Connect uses advanced online videoconferencing technology built using the Vonage Video API and wraparound instructional tools to give participants a free, high-quality platform to record StoryCorps conversations remotely.
“Social distancing is the exact opposite of the StoryCorps ethos, which strives to bring people together and acknowledge and celebrate our common humanity,” Dave Isay, founder and president of StoryCorps, said. “At this time of physical separation, the StoryCorps interview methodology is a more essential tool than ever before for bringing us together.”
The organization began developing StoryCorps Connect in March in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, motivated by the belief that at this time of physical separation, StoryCorps can provide a critical public service to increase connection to others and reduce the impact of isolation, particularly on vulnerable populations in this country.
StoryCorps is made possible by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private corporation funded by the American people.
“Our nation’s young people care about the plight of seniors in isolation, sometimes without family with which to connect,” said Pat Harrison, CPB president and CEO. “CPB is proud to support StoryCorps Connect — America’s virtual storytelling peace corps, to ensure that at this tragic time in America’s history, we are able to meaningfully connect with one another.”
The conversations are preserved for future generations at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress and become instantly accessible and shareable through the StoryCorps Archive. WUKY plans to broadcast edited versions of select submissions from its local communities.
Founded in 2003, StoryCorps has brought more than 600,000 Americans together — two at a time — to record intimate, face-to-face conversations about their lives, create human connection, pass wisdom from one generation to the next, and leave a legacy for the future. It is the largest single collection of voices ever gathered.
WUKY is a community-supported service of the University of Kentucky, which provides high-quality news, cultural and entertainment content through the use of existing and emerging media to create a more informed and engaged community.
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