FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne Media Collaborative) – A group of Northeast Indiana media organizations and affiliated institutions are pleased to announce the creation of the Fort Wayne Media Collaborative, with a grant from the Knight Foundation, and under the guidance of the New York-based Solutions Journalism Network.

The Collaborative has launched a year-long project to report and produce a series of stories focused on the housing crisis that has had disastrous effects for many Northeast Indiana residents.

The Collaborative is made up of nine media organizations – WANE-TV, WBOI-FM Public Radio, Input Fort Wayne, Fort Wayne Magazine, Fort Wayne Ink Spot, El Mexicano, Blacklight Media, and Lofthouse Films – and several local academic institutions – Purdue Fort Wayne, the University of Saint Francis, Indiana Institute of Technology, the Allen County Public Library – whose leaders care deeply about the housing crisis that has divided and devastated the entire community.

In 2021, representatives from Input Fort Wayne (an Issue Media Group publication), the Center for Collaborative Media at Purdue Fort Wayne, and Fort Wayne Ink Spot approached the Solutions Journalism Network (SJN) to discuss the most urgent issues facing their community. This project is launching with support from SJN’s Local Media Project initiative.

The Solutions Journalism Network is a nonprofit committed to transforming journalism and giving all people access to news that helps them envision and build a more equitable and sustainable world. The Local Media Project (LMP) is a multi-year initiative launched in 2019, with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation as well as the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation, to strengthen and reinvigorate local media ecosystems through the catalyzing of sustainable solutions journalism-oriented collaboratives.

The Fort Wayne Collaborative will explore solutions to the region’s housing crisis based on solid evidence, and propose actions that governments, institutions, neighborhoods, and individuals can take to change the community dynamic, ease human suffering, and foster the creation of thriving neighborhoods.

Over the coming year, Collaborative members will research, report, create and publish its work on the group’s website, and on the websites, TV, radio, and in print publications of our member organizations. The group hopes to encourage Northeast Indiana citizens to tell their own stories, become active in their communities, demand change where needed, and commit to improving the health of their neighborhoods and communities.

For more information, contact Project Manager Julie Creek at  julie@centerforgrantresearchandwriting.com  or 260-466-8235.

Meet the Fort Wayne Media Collaborative

Members of the Media Collaborative will be speaking at 89.1 WBOI’s Issues & Ales panel at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 4, at Coyote Creek Golf Club, 4935 Hillegas Rd. in Fort Wayne.

WBOI’s Issues & Ales is an award-winning panel discussion event focused on issues important to the Fort Wayne community. Panelists take audience questions (in-person, through email or via social media), and work on the answers while guests relax with a bite to eat or a drink.

This event is free and open to the public.

The discussion on May 4 will feature:

  • Education in Indiana: what’s next after COVID and the 2022 legislative session
  • The Fort Wayne Media Collaborative: a group of local media outlets including WBOI looking to tackle the issue of affordable housing in the area and possible solutions