Program Venture Fund

The KUOW Program Venture Fund (PVF) provides special support for staff and independent reporters and producers to develop new programming focused on the Puget Sound region. Programs funded by the PVF can be a series of feature reports, documentaries or a variety of short audio pieces. The PVF is not currently accepting applications.

Explore previous grantees and their feature stories.

KUOW Photo/Tonya Mosley

This week, we’ve been airing stories by reporter Tonya Mosley centered around the question: What is the black experience in Seattle? Below, hear Web exclusive interviews from more people Mosley interviewed for her series, Black In Seattle

KUOW Photo/Tonya Mosley

Tonya Mosley's Black in Seattle series on KUOW immediately struck a chord with her first piece that asked a fraught question: Where are the black people? For a large and progressive metro area, Seattle actually lags behind other cities and the country as a whole in its black population.

Listeners and readers added their own insight as to what Seattle offers and what it is missing for the black community.

Follow the hashtag #blackinseattle on Twitter and add your questions and insights. Don't have a Twitter account? Eavesdrop on the chat in real-time.

Courtesy of MOHAI, Seattle Post-Intelligencer Collection, 2000.107

On a recent Thursday evening, Amalia Martino rushed from work to catch the last few minutes of her daughter Sophia’s soccer game. She pointed out her daughter on the field, laughing a little: “My daughter is the brown one.”

KUOW Photo/Tonya Mosley

What is it like to be black in the fifth whitest major city in America?

It’s not an easy question to answer.

Seattle’s black population hovers around 8 percent, with more leaving every year.

Housing in the Yesler Terrace area.
KUOW Photo/Dominic Black

When Yesler Terrace finally becomes a planned, mixed-income neighborhood in the next 10 or 15 or maybe even 20 years, it won't be the first in the city. New Holly, Rainier Vista and High Point are all former public housing projects. They were redeveloped through Hope VI, a federal program that came into being in 1993, at a time when public housing was seen by some as a social policy failure, an example of how government got things wrong.

KUOW Photo/Dominic Black

Kristin O'Donnell loves meetings. "Absolutely my hobby. I do enjoy meetings," she tells me over a cup of tea in the Panama Hotel. Meetings, she says, offer a way to affect change in her community. And besides, she likes to put on a show. "To a large extent community organizing is theater; it works just often enough that I'm hooked."

From Profanity Hill To Yesler Terrace

Jan 13, 2013
Demolition in 1940
Courtesy MOHAI

Rumor has it that somewhere in a forgotten corner of a basement somewhere in Seattle there's a decaying 3-D model of a brand new Yesler Terrace. It was dreamed up in the late 1960s but, like the R H Thomson Expressway or the parking lot that was planned for where the Pike Place Market still stands, it never made it out of the world of imagination and onto the grid of the real world.

In 2013, after six years of planning, it appears another vision of a brand new development will take root where Yesler Terrace now stands. It's not the first transformation this patch of ground has seen though. This is the story of two places that occupy that ground -- one in the present and one in the past.

This NOT Just In: The Last Episode Of J.P. Patches

Dec 28, 2012
J.P. Patches and Gertrude from The J.P. Patches Show.
Courtesy of Chris Wedes

Chris Wedes passed away earlier this year after a long battle with cancer.  Wedes was the host of the long-running JP Patches Show on KIRO TV and one of the region's most beloved figures.  "This NOT Just In" looks back to the final weekday episode of the popular program, back in December 1978.

How We Mourned John Lennon Before The Internet

Dec 7, 2012
Roy Kerwood / Wikipedia

John Lennon was murdered 30 years ago. We'll look back at how Seattleites mourned the death of the former Beatle in a time before the Internet, social media and cell phones.

Lincoln Potter

The mystery of why the Pacific Northwest has one of the highest rates of multiple sclerosis in the world is as enduring as the mystery of the D.B. Cooper hijacking — and has proven about as difficult to crack.

Recently, however, scientists have been closing in on some likely triggers that may be causing the body to hijack its own immune system and turn on itself. Those new findings could lead to new treatment strategies in the future.

Carol Smith

The Pacific Northwest has one of the highest rates of multiple sclerosis in the world, yet the reasons why remain elusive. It’s an old mystery, but one that now has a new face. Today, doctors are seeing a growing number of cases in kids. They hope these young patients will yield more clues to what causes the disease.

D.B. Cooper

On November 24, 1971, a man who is referred to as D.B. Cooper hijacked a Boeing 727 on a flight between Portland, Oregon and Seattle. He extorted $200,000 in ransom, and parachuted from the plane. A look back at the hijacking which has become legendary in the Pacific Northwest and the rest of America.

The Radical Roots Of Yesler Terrace

Nov 16, 2012

Yesler Terrace is Seattle's oldest public housing project. It was revolutionary when it was completed in 1940. In the near future, though, it will be completely demolished.

In its place will sprout a series of high rise towers with a limited number of low-income housing units alongside up to 4,000 market-rate private housing units, offices, retail and commercial spaces. The ultimate goal, says the Seattle Housing Authority, is to create a sustainable, healthy, mixed-income neighborhood.

It's a radical plan, controversial, and every bit as transformational as that which gave rise to Yesler Terrace in 1940.

For Young Adults, Autism Diagnosis Opens Doors, Minds

Nov 10, 2012
Dorian Hinkle and Jordan Howard
KUOW photo/Bryan Buckalew

Growing up, Jordan Howard always felt like an outsider. He had trouble making friends, and he felt awkward in groups. He says he felt like one of those misunderstood high school clichés. And he could never put his finger on why.

Alex Brenner, Jordan Howard and Dorian Hinkle
KUOW photo/Bryan Buckalew

The first time Rolando Elias came to work at the Federal Way farmers market, Dr. April Walter was nervous.

“That was a big-time risk,” April says. “It could have blown up in my face.” She opened a tent at the market to give young adults with autism a chance to work.