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Tiny Spark

We investigate philanthropy, nonprofits and for-profit social good initiatives. In-depth interviews and shoe leather reporting from across the globe. Send us your tips. www.tinyspark.org
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Now displaying: 2019
Dec 19, 2019

How are Black women redefining what it means to be philanthropists? We sit down with four leaders in philanthropy and impact investing to discuss how their race and gender affect and inspire their work. 

Nov 27, 2019

We meet the people involved in grassroots movements to culturally and economically empower the Oglala Lakota Nation living on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, one of the most impoverished and neglected regions in the country.

Nov 7, 2019

Criminal defense lawyer Abbe Smith is often asked how she defends people accused of committing terrible crimes. Hear her moving reply, and learn why she believes the guilty deserve a spirited defense.

Oct 29, 2019

Innocence Project attorneys and law students in Texas take on an enormous pile of cases every year, tackling legal and moral challenges as they work to free the wrongfully convicted from prison.

Oct 11, 2019

Pastor and activist, Rev. Mariama White-Hammond describes how her experience of racial and economic injustice led her to fight for the planet as a whole and explains why it is time to “live differently.”

Sep 24, 2019

Two climate change advocates discuss the need to understand the destruction of the environment through a racial lens, and the promising and powerful future of inclusive climate action.

Sep 12, 2019

We speak with multimillionaire Nick Hanauer, who calls on the nation’s wealthiest to pay more tax and for all of us to pay more attention to righting the economy’s systemic wrongs.

Jul 1, 2019

Appalling conditions in the ‘Jungle’ migrant camp in France drew people from across Europe to help. A volunteer shares her experience and explains how rising anti-immigrant policies are turning ordinary citizens into humanitarians.

Jun 12, 2019

We explore ways to decrease wealth inequality in the US with economist Darrick Hamilton who proposes giving every newborn thousands of dollars in a ‘baby bond’ account which they can access when they turn 18.

May 29, 2019

As inequality grows, we look at look at ideas for narrowing the economic gap between the races, from reparations to raising the minimum wage.

May 9, 2019

Using fiery Instagram posts, and uncomfortable tweets, the social media campaign No White Saviors challenges white people to examine race, power, and their own roles when attempting to 'help' in communities and countries not their own. Its co-founders explain why their motto is: "If you’re not uncomfortable, you’re not listening."

Apr 23, 2019

Is it possible for charity to worsen the lives of those they purport to help? We investigate how a global surge in one form of “voluntourism” exploits vulnerable children and contributes to child trafficking

Apr 5, 2019

We explore nonprofits’ propensity to create “survivor porn” and the ways in which the sector trades in “parading trauma".

Mar 22, 2019

Megan Ming Francis explains how philanthropists—even well-intentioned ones—can “capture” the social movements they fund and, in doing so, steer grassroots organizations and activists away from their original missions.

Mar 8, 2019

On International Women’s Day, we speak to the founders of #VisibleWikiWomen about their efforts to decolonize the Internet, and to “make all of the wonderful women in the world visible” on one of the world’s most popular websites: Wikipedia.

Feb 21, 2019

The co-directors of GrantAdvisor, a Yelp-like site that rates the nation's charitable foundations, describe how fears of retribution in the field inspired them to launch the platform, and why honest dialogue between nonprofits and foundations can help make philanthropy better.

Feb 7, 2019

Whether vocally critiquing the sector on his blog Nonprofit AF, or working to develop leaders of color at his nonprofit in Seattle, Vu Le’s frustrations fuel his drive to make the industry do better.

Jan 25, 2019

Hoping to diversify the next generation of doctors and deal with a drastic decrease in the number of primary care physicians in the US, New York University is now offering free tuition to its medical school students. But will it work? And is free tuition enough to choose primary care over higher paying specialties?

Jan 10, 2019

In their new book, Outbreak Culture: The Ebola Crisis and the Next Epidemic, Dr. Pardis Sabeti and journalist Lara Salahi argue that epidemics don’t just spread deadly diseases, they can also breed a toxic culture among those who are helping.

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