The South Jersey Information Equity Project was conceived at the Center for Cooperative Media in late 2019 through a partnership with the Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists. Its goal is to address media inequity in South Jersey, specifically by seeking to improve the quality and quantity of news and information produced by and for communities of color.

SJIEP seeks to support and elevate Black media makers, specifically in Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, Salem, Cumberland, and Atlantic counties — including those who identify as journalists and those who do not — and connect them with resources, funding, and platform partners to share their work.

The project also aims to build trust and community connections through media making and strengthen the networks between Black journalists, media, and communities in South Jersey.

Latest stories + updates:

Why community reporting matters now more than ever

By Phil Lewis | Center for Cooperative Media | July 19, 2024

The following remarks were delivered by Phil Lewis at the closing ceremony for the 2024 cohort of reporting fellows on June 27, 2024, as part of the South Jersey Information Equity Project from the Center for Cooperative Media.

Teen Bridges: Camden’s Latest Effort to Empower Local Youth

By Ahnyah Pinckney | Black in Jersey | April 18, 2024

The Neighborhood Center launched its inaugural Teen Bridges Program in Camden last week, bringing together vendors and community partners to offer resources that might otherwise be inaccessible to students.

Camden renames street after Heisman Trophy winner, completes massive renovations

By Frank Santos | Black in Jersey | April 13, 2024

Mayor Victor Carstarphen, alongside the Board of Commissioners, elected officials, and the local community, gathered on Tuesday to commemorate this event. Rozier himself, a proud Camden native and NFL retiree, shared his feelings about his roots.

Exploring Black Strategic Mothering: Insights from Dr. Riché J. Daniel Barnes

By Shaniele Brown | SCOOP USA | April 2, 2024

On Monday, March 18, 2024, Rutgers University-Camden hosted a discussion on Black Strategic Mothering and the School “Choice” Market, organized by The Blackademics Faculty Group and Gender Studies.

Poetry takes center stage: NJ teens compete for the championship title

By Queena Bergen | Atlantic City Focus | March 31, 2024

Students from across the state competed for the chance to represent New Jersey at the national Poetry Out Loud competition to be held in Washington DC.

A sisterhood empowering women through fun and fitness

By Taja Johnson | Atlantic City Focus | March 31, 2024

More than just a recreational club, the 40+ Double Dutch Club is a sisterhood with a powerful mission: to empower women in mental health and physical fitness while fostering friendship, fun, and fellowship.

Rhyme and reason: The Black voice during National Poetry Month

By Queena Bergen | Atlantic City Focus | March 31, 2024

The choice of April for National Poetry Month was inspired by the triumphs of Black History Month in February and Women’s History Month in March.

Five N.J. women leading the way this Women’s History Month

By Ahnyah Pinckney | Black in Jersey | March 30, 2024

Women’s History Month provides an opportunity to acknowledge and praise the contributions women of all backgrounds have made to society. And here in New Jersey, Black women are defying stereotypes and showcasing that Black women are not a monolith.

Teenshop, Inc. empowers young girls in South Jersey

By Taja Johnson | Atlantic City Focus | March 30, 2024

Teenshop aims to empower young girls to define their futures and change the world. With chapters in Camden, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia, Teenshop prides itself on a remarkable record of 100% college acceptance among its participants.

Multi-use venues like Nancy’s Miller’s space could be key to growth of local young creatives, economy

By Erika Heinrich | Front Runner New Jersey | March 25, 2024

It is recognizable by the giant clock that stands at its entrance. Miller uses the old bank’s charm to her advantage, having renovated the old teller window for a bride or groom suite in the case of an outdoor wedding. The vintage vault makes a bold statement overlooking the dance floor. 

Melanin Market spreads its wings with Cultural Fusion Festival on April 13

By Brandon Edwards | Front Runner New Jersey | March 21, 2024

South Jersey’s Melanin Market, which has helped businesses of color find an audience of loyal customers for several years, will spread its wings on Saturday, April 13 when it holds its Cultural Fusion Festival at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia. The festival will be held at the convention center, 1101 Arch Street, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

N.J. Gov. Murphy signs new law to address affordable housing crisis

By Ahnyah Pinckney | Black in Jersey | March 21, 2024

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed a new law Wednesday that would expedite the building of affordable housing and nullify the control municipalities once individually had over housing authority.

Remembering a leader: Dr. Irene Hill Smith

By Emmanuel Young | SCOOP USA | March 18, 2024

Women’s History Month recognizes the accomplishments of women who impacted history; many people use this month to award and remember past and current examples of leadership, creativity, and education — such as Dr. Irene Hill-Smith.

Jersey entrepreneurs shine at ‘Women That Do’ event

By Frank Santos | Black in Jersey | March 12, 2024

Last Sunday, the Voorhees Town Center buzzed with inspiration and empowerment as it hosted “Women That Do,” a celebration of Black and Brown women leading in various industries across South Jersey. This vibrant community event showcased woman-owned businesses, talents, and organizations, highlighting the dynamic entrepreneurial spirit among women.

N.J. mulling proposal to ban new fossil fuel plants. What does that mean for Camden?

By Frank Santos | Black in Jersey | March 9, 2024

This week, the Senate Environment and Energy Committee made sizable steps towards N.J.’s transition to 100% green energy by 2035 with mandates for public utility companies, divestments from fossil fuel companies, and some limitations on further power plant construction.

Vegan restaurant Shokra Soups gives Cory & Ada X new vision on life

By Brandon Edwards | Front Runner New Jersey | March 6, 2024

In 2013 on a construction site in Pennsylvania, Cory X experienced a serious work injury that turned his life upside down. Shattering every bone in his foot, Cory was told that he would never walk again without the help of a wheelchair or a cane.

A vision for New Jersey

By Emmanuel Young | SCOOP USA | March 5, 2024

The Honorable Ras Baraka, Mayor of Newark, visited Rowan University on February 20, 2024, to discuss his plans for New Jersey and how he envisions helping his state.

Murphy’s 2024 budget proposal includes medical debt relief and increased funding for NJ Transit

By Tennyson Donyea and Ahnyah Pinckney | Black in Jersey | Feb. 28, 2024

As New Jersey residents seek relief around rising expenses and medical debt, Governor Phil Murphy proposed a budget on Tuesday that would provide medical debt relief and boost funding for NJ Transit and public schools.

Lawnside Legacies: Delving into history and community contributions

By Shaniele Brown | SCOOP USA | Feb. 27, 2024

Black History Month is when often-overlooked narratives of resilience, perseverance, strength, and community get spotlighted. In the heart of New Jersey, you will find Lawnside, the first independent, self-governing Black municipality in Northern America (Incorporated in 1926), a town enriched in history and holds a special significance within African origin.

BHM: Representation Matters at Glassy Brown Cookies

By Erika Heinrich | Front Runner New Jersey | Feb. 20, 2024

Arlene Felder, the owner of Glassy Brown Cookies, said representation was the goal when she hosted her Black History Cookie Decorating Class at Cherry Hill Mall on Feb. 3. 

Sunday Best “Sneaker Ball” Gala

By Emmanuel Young | SCOOP USA | Feb. 20, 2024

The South Jersey Ecclesiastic Church of God In Christ held its annual event to support the members of its Youth Department by having a Sneaker Ball Gala at Paris Catering on February 11.

Valentine’s Day: Looking for the 3 P’s That Make Relationships Last

By Brandon Edwards | Front Runner New Jersey | Feb. 14, 2024

First of all, this article has nothing to do with the PPP (Paycheck Protection Program) loans of 2020. Instead, these three Ps represent the keys to finding real love when looking for a mate. While this may appear to be common knowledge, the divorce rates and percentage of single-parent households in the Black community indicate a fundamental issue in the way we choose our mates.

Overcoming through art: Camden’s Black History Month Tribute

By Ahnyah Pinckney | Black in Jersey | Feb. 13, 2024

Over the weekend, the Center for Family Services and Swing Phi Swing collaborated to celebrate Black History Month through discussion, visuals, and performing arts. Cherelle Crook, a member of Swing Phi Swing and employee at the Center for Family Services, orchestrated the celebration at Rutgers Camden Center.

Adrienne Bauldock on her work with SJIEP fellows

Feb. 6, 2024

South Jersey Information Equity Project coordinator, Adrienne Bauldock, talks about her work to support and uplift emerging media makers in South Jersey as they report on their communities.

Cassandra Etienne on SJIEP’s media equity work in South Jersey

Feb. 2, 2024

Cassandra Etienne, assistant director of programming and membership at the Center for Cooperative Media, talks about her work with Adrienne Bauldock and Reet Starwind to support and uplift emerging media makers in South Jersey as part of projects like SJIEP and Stories Invincible.

South Jersey Information Equity Project hosts kickoff event and welcomes 2024 reporting fellows

By Cassandra Etienne and Adrienne Bauldock | Center for Cooperative Media | Jan. 22, 2024

SJIEP kicked off the 2024 reporting fellowship on Saturday, Jan. 13, with a day of introductory workshops at Washington Township High School in Sewell, NJ.

How media literacy and community storytelling are shaping the future of news in South Jersey

By Charles Curtis, III | SJCR | Nov. 14, 2023

Community journalism empowers and equips residents with the knowledge to inform, motivate, and engage with their community. As part of SJCR, we will focus on media literacy, sourcing reliable data, and multimedia storytelling techniques.

Introducing the new South Jersey Community Reporters project leads

By Adrienne Bauldock | SJCR | Oct. 17, 2023

Today, we’re pleased to introduce you to the two talented, experienced local journalists selected from within the SJIEP network to work directly with the community reporters.

Personal essay: Sade Osuji looks to join exclusive club as black female commercial pilot

By Sade Osuji | Front Runner New Jersey | Oct. 16, 2023

My name is Sade Osuji and I am stepping into the cockpit and flying into a world where the number of Black female pilots will count for more than just 1% of the overall female pilot population in the United States.

Open call: South Jersey Community Reporters workshop series

By Cassandra Etienne | Center of Cooperative Media | Oct. 3, 2023

Applications are currently open for the new program: a collaboration between the New Jersey Council for the Humanities and the South Jersey Information Equity Project.

South Jersey Information Equity Project congratulates 2023 reporting fellows, gears up for the next cohort

By Cassandra Etienne and Adrienne Bauldock | Center of Cooperative Media | July 19, 2023

Over the last several months, the fellows have been producing solutions-based, restorative narrative journalism in their respective communities across Camden, Burlington, and Gloucester counties.

Honoring and celebrating our 2023 South Jersey Info Equity Project reporting fellows

By Joe Amditis | Center of Cooperative Media | June 29, 2023

We hosted a celebration of the 2023 South Jersey Information Equity Project reporting fellows at WHYY Studios in Philadelphia on June 29. The fellows are part of the second SJIEP reporting cohort.

Voice Your Choice: Willingboro Council’s Kaya McIntosh, Samantha Whitfield, Tiffani Worthy make their re-election run

By Sade Osuji | Front Runner New Jersey | June 2, 2023

Willingboro Township’s ballot trio — Mayor Kaya McIntosh, Deputy Mayor Samantha Whitfield, and Councilwoman Dr. Tiffani Worthy — is running for re-election for township council this primary election.

Willingboro Amphitheatre shines at National Poetry Month event

By Sade Osuji | Front Runner New Jersey | April 25, 2023

The newly renovated Willingboro Amphitheatre was on full display during a ribbon-cutting ceremony and events celebrating National Poetry Month by the Willingboro Recreation and Parks Department this past weekend.

Camden celebrates Earth Week as the Camden Strong-Clean Camden Neighborhood Cleanup Days begin

By Jenise Rolle | Scoops USA | April 25, 2023

EarthWeek 2023 may have officially ended, but the City of Camden is continuing the celebration through a series of neighborhood cleanups.

Willingboro Rec and Parks Dept. honors 6 at Phenomenal Women Awards

By Sade Osuji | Front Runner New Jersey | April 24, 2023

The Willingboro Recreation and Parks Department honored six women on Sunday, April 23 during the 11th annual Phenomenal Women Awards Dinner.

How a former home turned theater is transforming the Black arts scene in Camden

By Jenise Rolle | Scoops USA | April 11, 2023

One woman is on a mission to help break the cycle of poverty in the City of Camden, New Jersey, and she is doing it through performing arts and creative playwriting.

Women’s History Month: Lavatt Ballard uses art to tell stories in historical context

By Sade Osuji | Front Runner New Jersey | March 23, 2023

Lavett Ballard uses her impactful artwork to tell stories about Black women and Black people within a historical context, creating re-imaged visual narratives of people of African descent that has been highly acknowledged by celebrities and other influencers.

New Jersey lawmakers want to create a sickle cell registry to provide ‘genetic counseling’

By Charles Curtis, III | March 20, 2023

Recently, the New Jersey State Assembly passed a bill establishing a central registry for sickle cell trait diagnoses that provides informational outreach and genetic counseling.

Tonya Breland, Erika Leak lead DEI cause with TESO

By Tyriq DeShields | March 15, 2023

Breland and Leak are the leaders of the Burlington County-based Teach Educators and Scholars Organization, or TESO. The organization is leading an initiative to make education more inclusive for everybody, mainly those in underserved communities.

Addressing period poverty in New Jersey

By Mya Calderon | March 9, 2023

Period poverty happens when someone can’t afford menstrual hygiene products, and New Jersey lawmakers hope to address the issue with new legislation.

Black Authors Showcase highlights new stories

By Tyriq DeShields | March 7, 2023

Local African American authors shared their stories — from historical resistance, overcoming personal challenges to learning about new heroes — at the Black Authors Showcase at Curate Noir inside Moorestown Mall on March 4.

New Jersey advocates react to anti-transgender bills

By Mya Calderon | March 1, 2023

This story tracks anti-transgender legislation in New Jersey and provides reactions from people in the community. 

Inside Ida’s Bookshop: A South Jersey gem named after a revolutionary Black writer

By Charles Curtis, III | Feb. 24, 2023

Located at 734 Haddon Avenue in Collingswood, NJ, Ida’s Bookshop is a Black-owned business that opened in 2021 following the success of its sister shop, Harriet’s Bookshop, located at 258 E. Girard Ave, which opened a year prior in February 2020 in Philadelphia.

Willingboro Rec and Parks, Faith In Action celebrate Black History Month

By Sade Osuji | Feb. 18, 2023

Willingboro Township’s Recreation and Parks Department celebrated Black History Month with a series of events that focused on the Black arts and health.

South Jersey Information Equity Project welcomes 2023 reporting fellows

By Adrienne Bauldock | Feb. 6, 2023

Read on to learn more about the 2023 cohort of SJIEP reporting fellows: Mya Calderon, Charles Curtis, III, Tyriq DeShields, Sade Osuji, and Jenise Rolle.

Meet Celeste Whittaker: SJIEP reporting fellowship adviser

By Adrienne Bauldock | Jan. 25, 2023

Veteran sports journalist will help guide and mentor South Jersey reporting fellows in 2023.

New SJIEP reporting fellowship cohort launches in South Jersey

By Joe Amditis | Jan. 16, 2023

Four new fellows will produce solutions-based, restorative narratives with and for communities of color in Camden, Gloucester, and Burlington counties

South Jersey Information Equity Project congratulates inaugural reporting fellows and announces plans for second cohort in 2023

By Cassandra Etienne | Nov. 2, 2022

We’re looking forward to our next round of reporting fellowships!

A group of about 20 Black journalists, media makers, and artists from South Jersey (plus a white guy named Joe in the front row) smile as they pose for a photo after a local journalism event.

Thanks so much to everyone who came out to celebrate our 2022 SJIEP fellows!

More info, plus a recap and some video coming soon!

South Jersey Information Equity Project welcomes five inaugural fellows

By Adrienne Bauldock | May 9, 2022

First cohort will produce restorative narrative-oriented stories about and for Black communities in South Jersey

The South Jersey Information Equity Project is a project of the Center for Cooperative Media at Montclair State University.