BATTLE CREEK, Mich., – The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) is supporting community engagement efforts for the micro-documentary series America Divided, which examines the sharp rise of inequality over the past 40 years. The series will debut on TV on Friday, Sept. 30, on EPIX.
Support for America Divided’s community engagement campaign is part of the foundation’s long-term commitment to racial equity, by promoting authentic and inclusive narratives to shift the national discourse and the perceptions that contribute to the racial disparities in health, education and economic security for children and families.
WKKF President and CEO La June Montgomery Tabron attended the Sept. 20 series premiere of the first episode in Los Angeles with filmmakers, executive producers and celebrity correspondents.
“Whether you’re talking about employment opportunities or housing, inequality has far-reaching and damaging effects on our children and their families,” said Montgomery Tabron. “The America Divided series unpacks some of the systemic causes that are holding back our families and our country in a way that I hope inspires everyone to seek change.”
The one-year, $966,730 grant will support more than 500 screenings in the places of focus in the film, including locations in Michigan; Chicago; the Rio Grande Valley of Texas; North Carolina; New York City; Los Angeles; Dayton, Ohio; and Pinellas County, Florida. It also includes a grassroots tour of the film and a robust effort to raise youth voice and perspectives nationally.
In the America Divided series, celebrity correspondents explore and investigate inequality in several categories, including employment opportunity and working conditions, health care, education, housing, safe drinking water, the criminal justice system and voting rights. Race, gender and citizenship status are threaded through the series.
“This series cuts to the heart of the inequality crisis, exploring life-and-death struggles around the economic, social and political divide,” said Solly Granatstein, who co-created and produced the series with Lucian Read and Richard Rowley. “Our aim is to expose the damage extreme inequality inflicts on all Americans, reveal its systemic causes and celebrate real-world heroes fighting for solutions.”
Using stories to bring communities together (#StoriesUniteUs), these stories are narrated by high-profile celebrity correspondents from diverse backgrounds, including legendary television producer Norman Lear; Oscar-winner and hip-hop artist Common; multi-award-winning actors Amy Poehler, America Ferrera, Rosario Dawson and Peter Sarsgaard; Grey’s Anatomy star and activist Jesse Williams; and actor and comedian Zach Galifianakis.
A number of WKKF grantees contributed their expertise and support to the development of ideas and solutions for the series, including The Advancement Project, The National Domestic Worker’s Alliance and the Southern Poverty Law Center, among others.
Following the series debut on EPIX on Sept. 30, it will also be available on Hulu and Amazon.
About the W.K. Kellogg Foundation The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.
The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Michigan, and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special emphasis is paid to priority