Epicenter NYC launches foundation to further advance efforts in support of New Yorkers and communities of color


Epicenter NYC, an award-winning multiplatform community journalism organization, today announced the launch of the Epicenter Foundation, a nonprofit organization that will advance critical efforts in support of diverse communities. The announcement comes on the heels of Ways of Showing Up, a first-of-its-kind two-day immersive experience, presented by Epicenter NYC and Department of Transformation, that aims to create space and inspire change through artistic action.

Epicenter, whose name draws from being at the epicenter of the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in NYC, started as a newsletter to help underserved communities navigate the pandemic through journalism, an artist program, small business coverage and on-the-ground resources. Since its launch, the community journalism outlet has been a stalwart in NYC neighborhoods, bringing critical resources and information, distributing COVID tests and vaccines, providing access to job opportunities, connecting communities to health care providers and mental health experts, and spotlighting artists and businesses.

“Epicenter was born in the pandemic to serve and center the diverse communities that make up New York and are a microcosm of this country. While COVID has waned, our efforts to support communities in the NY metro area have not. We continue to ramp up and this foundation enables us to strengthen our initiatives to distribute resources and information and empower young people, artists and small businesses with opportunities that support their success,” said S. Mitra Kalita, co-founder and publisher of Epicenter NYC. “We are grateful for the incredible partners and volunteers as well as our dedicated staff for getting us here. This foundation will be groundbreaking.”

“Today’s announcement is significant as part of the work Epicenter has been leading aims to create space that fosters learning and creativity, spotlights artists, and highlights activism and wellness through the form of art. We’ve seen the impact of art as a way of engagement to help reduce the spread of COVID or raise awareness of the climate crisis on a local level. Through the foundation, Epicenter will have the opportunity to scale efforts that bridge the opportunity gap for people from all walks of life,” added Nitin Mukul, Queens-based artist and Epicenter NYC co-founder and creative director.

Every week, Epicenter NYC is on the ground engaging neighbors in English and Spanish on how to access resources. The organization also supports local artists through its dedicated and growing artist network. These artists, whose work ranges from poetry and short stories to artwork and any shareable experience, are profiled and receive a $100 stipend. The program shifts formats of news and info dissemination, storytelling and offers sustainability to artists at risk of leaving NYC or abandoning their craft. Ways of Showing Up, a two-day immersive experience, is the latest example of how Epicenter works with key partners to bring to life ways to create community and connect people to information and each other.

Epicenter NYC’s core business model, under the umbrella brand KMC Creative Inc., has relied on a diversified revenue model that includes advertising and government contracts, reader revenue and events. Philanthropic supporters include Mellon Foundation, Ford Foundation, Borealis Philanthropy and the Commonwealth Fund. 

“We have been engaged in charitable work since our launch exactly four years ago,” added Kalita. “This nonprofit entity enables us to continue to uplift our communities through partnerships and other innovative solutions rooted in social impact that guides us and drives us.”

The Foundation will expand upon Epicenter NYC’s core mission of engaging hyperlocal communities of color in underestimated neighborhoods through the power of connection. Building on Epicenter NYC’s unique form of multiplatform, hyperlocal newsgathering and storytelling, the Foundation will further develop new models of programming to advance social justice across arts and culture, education, health and civic engagement. 

About Epicenter NYC:

Epicenter started as a newsletter to help underserved communities, especially those at the epicenter of the epicenter in NYC, navigate COVID through journalism, an artist program, small business coverage and on-the-ground resources. Today, it is an award-winning multiplatform community journalism organization that also includes podcast and video content, spotlights artists, small businesses and entrepreneurs, features film festivals, art exhibits and things to do, and covers the issues that impact people's everyday life. Epicenter connects, informs and engages people IRL and digitally through the power of culture and community. Learn more at Epicenter-NYC.com.


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