Do you have a funny story of working in nonprofits? Ever have a site visit end badly? Spent hours working on a grant application for a grant that would technically be enough to cover your hours working on the application? Well, we want to hear from YOU! Join us this Friday, May 26th at 1pm PST for a twitter chat and share your experiences working in nonprofits as a person of color! Because you know it’s a whole damn job fighting white saviorism.
Have you seen some of the fun perks we have on our Seed&Spark campaign yet? We have everything from fun stickers with the Nonprofit logo designed by our graphic artist, Shannon Paine, tote bags hand-pressed personally and lovingly by the Nonprofit creator herself, to consulting advice from someone from our team that’s started their own creative business, or is a professional writer, or musician! You can learn more about our team members and their experiences working in their specific craft on our team page here.
– Nonprofit Team
We now have 10 days left on our Seed&Spark fundraising campaign to help us with production costs to film the pilot episode of Nonprofit! If you believe in the power of storytelling, then please back our project today. Nonprofit: A Web Series is our attempt at trying to shift the narrative about what it looks like to work in nonprofits, what it means to be a young queer woman of color navigating the whitest city in America, and what it means to be Asian and Pacific Islander in today’s society. Can we count on you to help us reach our goal?
Check out what folks have been saying about our show and the team behind it!
- Colors of Influence: “Nonprofit” web series centers POC as protagonist
- Producers of “Nonprofit” chat with hosts of Bread and Roses (KBOO); interview
- Women and Hollywood: The Personal is Communal: Crowdfunding Picks
- OPB News: California Native Finds Her Racial Identity Changes in Ultra-White Oregon (Interview with Nonprofit Creator, Luann Algoso)
- Blog recommendation on Angry Asian Man
“The idea for the comedy web series “Nonprofit” also stems from personal experience, as creator Luann Algoso’s pulls inspiration from her own career in nonprofit organizations. Its main protagonist, Gabby Antonio, is just beginning her career as a community organizer. She quickly learns that doing “good work,” particularly as a woman of color, may not be as effortless as it seems.”
May is Asian Pacific Heritage Month which means that during the WHOLE month, you are likely seeing a ton of articles, interviews, and events in recognition of the history and contributions that Asian and Pacific Islanders have made in the U.S.
Like any month dedicated to a marginalized community, a month of recognition is great, but doesn’t quite capture the entirety of what a community has accomplished AND all of the issues that continue to affect that community. For Asians and Pacific Islanders, we still continue to struggle with the repercussions of the model minority myth, our issues deemed invisible due to lack of disaggregated data, and our narratives limited to what the media chooses to show in the news, television, and film. Of course, those are just a few examples!
With Nonprofit, we are hoping to contribute to an emerging body of work out there in television and films that are already shifting perceptions of Asians and Pacific Islanders with more nuanced and complex stories. NO MORE ASIAN SIDEKICKS, GOT IT?! We hope to pave a path for even MORE stories in hopes that we can come to normalize and identify with the experiences of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the U.S.
So in honor of APAHM, check out these articles that highlight what it means to be Asian and Pacific Islander NOW:
- ‘First you make them laugh:’ Asian American performers fight for visibility
- Aziz Ansari on the Return of ‘Master of None’ and that ‘S.N.L.’ Monologue
- K-Town’92 Explores the Untold Stories of the L.A. Riots
- How much are students learning about the Chinese Exclusion Act? It’s largely up to teachers
- Texas lawmaker takes a stand against immigration bill
- ‘Model Minority’ Myth Again Used as a Racial Wedge Between Asians and Blacks
- Dismantling Stereotypes About Asian-American Identity Through Art
P.S. Another way you can support Asian and Pacific Islander communities is contributing to our Seed&Spark campaign! Grab a fun sticker, tote bag, or land a cameo appearance on the show! You can back the project here.
Thank you so much to Maileen Hamto of Colors of Influence for the interview about Nonprofit! Check out the interview with our creator and producer, Luann Algoso, as she talks about the show, how the project reflects her values as a woman of color, and why we need more POC in the creative industry in general. You can read the interview here.
Last Friday, Amy and I talked with hosts from the KBOO’s Bread and Roses, Pamela and Puchi, about all things Nonprofit! We shared more details about the show and plans for it, the team behind it, our goals for the project, and how to correctly pronounce Ralph Fiennes’ name. SUPER RANDOM.
Missed the show? You can listen to the recording here!
We’re at 13% towards our goal with only 17 days left – can we count on you to help us reach our goal before the deadline? Back the project here!
When I set out to write the screenplay for Nonprofit, I originally wanted to capture all of the hilarious but often challenging moments that I and those of my colleagues and friends have experienced in working within the nonprofit sector. How had a show about nonprofit life not been written about yet?!
But as I worked through the script with each revision, workshopped it with different groups of writers, filmmakers, and colleagues, and gathered the nerve to actually launch a crowdfunding campaign to raise money to film it, I realized that this show isn’t about me and what my circle of nonprofit workers have experienced anymore. The project is SO much more than that now.
Like every start of a grassroots organizing campaign, you need to set goals so you know what you’re working towards. When you know what your goals are you are more strategic with your time, energy, and resources and we at Nonprofit know that we are limited in all of these.
Our goals for Nonprofit are:
- Raise the visibility of Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) in the media. We know that there has been an emergence of more AAPI actors in mainstream films and television and Nonprofit seeks to contribute to the growing list of projects that feature more AAPI characters with nuanced and complex identities.
- Present multiple ways activism can look like, in particular how cultural work/arts activism can shift narratives. There isn’t one way to be an activist and Nonprofit seeks to demystify the idea that activism can only look one way. Activism is hard work but it takes a community and ultimately a movement in order to make social change.
- Challenge the model minority myth. Part of raising the visibility of AAPI in the media is offering more identities, experiences, and narratives that show what it means to be AAPI today. When we have the opportunity to provide more stories of what it means to be AAPI, we begin to shift the narratives that often lead to informing harmful policies that impact AAPI communities in real ways.
- Provide opportunities for people of color performers and production team members to work and contribute to this project. This project has a mixture of folks that have never acted in their life (myself included!) and those that have a large array of projects under their belt. We want to ensure that those that are able to work on this indie project get the experience and access they need to work on other projects in the future. And we know that not only do we need more POC in front of the camera, but it’s just as important to have POC behind the camera too, whether it’s in directing, producing, and writing.
- Offer a counter narrative to the show Portlandia. Nonprofit is specifically based in Portland for a reason. After living here for over 7 years during an era that Portlandia really helped shape in the perception of what Portland appears to be for those who don’t live here, the narrative that the show put out there ultimately painted the tropes that we have come to associate Portland with now – snobby bicyclists, “feminist” bookstore owners, and a mayor that plays in a reggae band (also, our former Mayor Sam Adams appeared in a few Portlandia episodes…) – and left out a HUGE chunk of the community that actually lives in Portland. We want to be at a point in the future where when folks bring up Portland in conversation, no longer will they cringe and say, “oh you mean that dreaded show Portlandia?” but they say, “Oh Portland! Like the show Nonprofit, that wonderful show with all the people of color in it? Yeah that’s totally how it is here.”
We know that we’re aiming high with this project and that our goals are ambitious, but why not aim high? Why not be ambitious? Why not try to go where others haven’t yet? If we don’t, who will?
As always, you can back the project on our Seed&Spark campaign. Don’t forget to share with friends, family, and everyone in your life! We got 24 days left of the campaign – will you help us keep up the momentum?
(The photo above is of Atticus’s thinking face.)
One major reason I decided to write Nonprofit was to demystify what activism can look like. Right now and particularly after the elections, there has been a rise of activated people looking for ways to make change in their community. The first 100 days of our current administration has passed and we know that the journey to the end of their time in office will now likely be a long one.
On days like today, where health care is in danger of being cut for millions of people especially women, queer, and trans people of color and low income families who heavily rely on the affordable care act, it is difficult to think that anything can be done to change the systems that keep marginalized people oppressed. As an activist, I have been involved in lobbying legislators to organizing communities against harmful local initiatives – and it is hard work.
For me, change happens through the shifting of culture and society, which is a critical piece in making systemic change. Not only do we need to work at advocating for policy change, but what informs policy change is through the work of changing hearts and minds about an issue. Now is a time in which we can try and do that by supporting grassroots projects like this one.
During the first day of our Seed&Spark campaign, we were able to raise $615! Thanks to you we are well on our way to meeting our goal. Raising funds in the first few days is critical in the overall success of our campaign. If you’ve already donated, THANK YOU! Please continue to share the campaign with your friends, family, and social networks. If you haven’t donated as of yet and plan to, we’d appreciate your support especially in these first few days.
Our goal is to reach $3000 by the end of Friday, May 5th, can you help us continue to keep up the momentum? Forward this message to 3 of your friends or post on social media as to why this project is important to you and during a time where we need to harness all of the ways to resist and thrive.
Thank you so much for your support!
May 3, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nonprofit explores the nonprofit world through the lens of a woman of color living in the whitest city in America
New web series offers counter narrative to Portlandia and centers the stories of communities of color living and working in Portland, Oregon
[Portland, Ore] On May 3, 2017, the new web series Nonprofit, a story that highlights the experience of a Filipina-American working for an advocacy nonprofit in Portland, Oregon will launch a crowdfunding campaign to support production costs to film the pilot episode. The grassroots effort is led by a team entirely made up of artists of color and comes at the end of an era created by Portlandia, a show that has for better or worse, helped cultivate the identity of the Pacific Northwest city for the past seven seasons.
Nonprofit was created by local artist-activist and organizer, Luann Algoso, after having worked in nonprofits in Portland. “This project is a way of sharing my story as a woman of color working and living in a major city that is 76% white, and also aims to highlight the narratives of communities of color that are often neglected in the mainstream media,” she shares. “‘Nonprofit’ is my attempt at challenging the dominant narratives about Portland because people of color live here too.”
Nonprofit follows the story of Gabby Antonio, a quirky and idealistic 25-year-old Filipina American that works as a community organizer at an advocacy nonprofit in Portland, Oregon. The pilot focuses on Gabby working through a series of obstacles – like a community training gone wrong, being stopped by a canvasser with a white savior complex, and gathering the nerve to interact with her biggest crush – in order to achieve her goal of planning a successful community-led neighborhood block party.
To learn more about Nonprofit: A Web Series, please visit www.nonprofitwebseries.com.