WPSU has been awarded a Public Media Award for Community Engagement by the National Educational Telecommunications Association for its Multicultural Children’s Festival.
The award, in the “Kids & Family” category, was announced at the 54th Annual Public Media Awards Gala in Charlotte, North Carolina, held on September 18. It was one of four community engagement awards given out nationwide by the association, which honors its members’ work in community engagement, content, education, marketing/communications, independent productions, and overall excellence.
According to the association, the award recognizes “a station’s exemplary community engagement in support of kids and families.”
WPSU created the festival to bring together people from a variety of countries and ethnicities to share music, art, food, and culture with each other and families from the community. Inclusion and belonging were central themes for the free event, which was held at the WPSU studios in April.
More than 800 adults and children attended the five-hour festival, where nearly 85 staff and volunteers from a dozen countries offered cultural experiences and activities. University student groups, local community members, and other organizations presented tables filled with art, history, culture, cuisine, and crafts that children and their caregivers could interact with. There were performances throughout the day from music and dance groups, including African drums and dancers, a Chinese Dragon dance, children playing classical music, and Irish Step Dancers.
WPSU plans to make the event an annual celebration.
“The Multicultural Children’s Festival is WPSU’s way of bringing people together within our community,” said event coordinator Tamra Fatemi. “Our goal is that every child can see themselves represented in some way and feel a sense of belonging. We hope to grow group participation each year, featuring even more countries, ethnicities, foods, art, dance, and cultures.”