Credible Messenger Reporting Project

Credible Messenger Film Festival, 2022

The Credible Messenger Reporting Project empowers people impacted by gun violence to report on root causes, lived experience and possible solutions from the community perspective. Credible Messengers are paired with advanced professional journalists to learn from each other and leverage their combined authority to produce and distribute independent news reports, with support provided by the Center.

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• Resources for Credible Messenger Reporting Teams
• Credible Messenger Project Proposal Form
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Credible Messenger Reports

They Don’t Care About Us – or Do They?

This documentary was produced by gunshot survivor Oronde McClain while participating as a community reporter in our Credible Messenger Reporting Project. The professional reporting parter was Cherri Gregg and the video producer was Brett Williams. [Essay, photos and behind the scenes interviews]

Stronger Every Day: Healing After Gun Violence

Tashawn Strother, a community journalist from our Credible Messenger Reporting Project, hosts an audio documentary sharing her family’s journey after her son Walter Willis was shot and critically wounded on New Year’s Eve in 2019. Voices include our Director of Research Dr. Jessica Beard, who is also the trauma surgeon who cared for Walter – and Walter himself. [Behind the scenes interviews]

These Philly Gun Violence Activists Are Not Giving Up On Saving Lives

Brandon Chastang, better known as B. McFly, interviews several prominent figures in Philadelphia’s gun violence prevention community in a series of videos he recently produced for our Credible Messenger Reporting Project. WHYY gun violence prevention reporter Sammy Caiola was the professional partner on this project and Chris Mansfield was the Credible Messenger video producer. [More videos]

“Humanity behind the headlines: Black men on surviving in Philly”

Lost in the calls to action and gruesome headlines are the real lived experiences of young Black men in communities where gun violence is not a news story, a tragic anomaly, or a talking point for evening news anchors, but a routine fact of everyday life.” This long-form report was written by Tyler Campbell. Photographs by Ronald Gray. Dana DiFilippo was the professional parter. [Word and pictures]

Never Ending Emotions

This documentary features a series of interviews addressing the emotional rollercoaster of life-changing events following the murder of a family member and discussing possible solutions to gun violence in Philadelphia. This team included Credible Messenger producer Kimberly Kamara, videographer and editor Gregory Greer and partnering professional journalist Erin Flynn Jay. [More info]

The Lasting Impact: The emotional scars that gun violence leaves behind

The first production from the Credible Messenger Reporting Project focuses on three co-victims of gun violence who worked together to show the long-lasting effects it can have on friends, family and community members. Maxayn Gooden was the Credible Messenger community journalist, Taj Devore-Bey was the Credible Messenger video producer and Chris Hepp was professional reporting partner. [More info]

The Path Forward

This short documentary called shares a conversation among four mothers who lost sons to gun violence in Philadelphia, with intimate experiences from first getting the news to learning how to survive. Dorothy Johnson-Speight was the Credible Messenger community journalist and Denise James was the professional reporting partner. [Read more]

Numb to Normalcy: Gun Violence in America

This video features intimate conversations among Ahmad Mitchell, Taylor Dixon-Moore and Yolanda Brutley-Dugger, students at Community College of Philadelphia who serves as Credible Messengers. The professional partner was Proof of Consciousness (P.O.C.), along with with assistant directors Aapril Rice and Alisha Laws. [More info]

Voices Beyond the Gunfire

Professional reporting partner Solomon Jones of WURD Radio curated this series of five radio interviews — conducted by three interviewers. This series elevates the voices that have not been heard on the issue of gun violence: those whose very lives are at risk. Credible Messengers included Darrell Holloway, Edwin “Tony” Murchison, Angela Sears, Brian Wallace and Joshua Cosby. [Listen to the complete series]