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Nonprofit journalism organization educates students on underreported global affairs

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- At Reynolds High School, students are gathered in the auditorium to learn a story they likely won't read in their textbooks.

“I think just as a person it helps me to expand my empathy because I understand stories and situations that I otherwise wouldn't have understood,” said Nupur Shah, a senior who listened to the presentation.

Daniella Zalcman lead the presentation in front of a few hundred students. She is an Independent Documentary Photographer who is working on a project about the lasting impacts of government mandated schools for indigenous children in the United States and Candada.

“It's rooted in education and it's something that was a narrative that was completely absent from my own educational history,” Zalcman said. “So it’s really important for me to talk about what actually happened to indigenous people in America.”

Zalcman came to Reynolds to share what she learned as part of her grant through the Pulitzer Center, a nonprofit organization that supports underreported global affairs through journalism and education.

“We have education programs in several cities but in Winston-Salem, the focus is on the rich artistic community in this city,” said Fareed Mostoufi, Senior Education Manager at Pulitzer Center. “And looking for ways to engage them differently in global issues and connect global issues to local.”

The NewsArts Initiative explores the intersections of arts and journalism and the Winston-Salem foundation gave Reynolds High School a $10,000 grant to participate. Journalists will lead workshops and presentations for students and Pulitzer Center will provide educational resources to Reynolds staff.

“Our work is hoping to make sure they`re starting to make connections to the world and also understanding and why it`s important to know the news and how they can find the best ways to access information,” said Mostoufi.

The Pulitzer Center launched 11 years ago and funded 11 projects the first year. Last year it funded 125 which have been published in numerous media outlets including The New York Times and PBS.