Appalshop News

Behind the Scenes

1 month ago

We bought a building! As you may have seen in last week’s newsletter, we purchased a former hospital on nearly five acres in Jenkins, Kentucky. It is 11,500 square feet, above the floodplain, and in need of some love. The outpouring of community support has been so heartening. In fact, many folks in the county were born in that very building! See more from WMYT: Appalshop officials excited after buying new building.   

No, we're not moving yet, and we certainly aren't leaving Letcher County. But while we host community listening sessions in the coming months to decide next steps, this space will allow us room to plan for more permanent location options. We are also still working out of temporary offices in Whitesburg and Jenkins. Here’s a taste of what we’ve been up to.

Staff Spotlight

Josh Outsey, Project Documentation Coordinator at our Archive, has been working hard documenting Black churches and culture in Appalachia. And his project just got cooler. He’s redeveloping his plan to include storytelling and songwriting workshops to be held in Southwest Virginia communities where the original church documentation occurred. In addition, he will be featured on the October 20 episode of the Melungeon Heritage Association’s podcast Melungeon Voices! Be sure to tune in.

Tiffany Turner, Community Development Coordinator for our Community Media Initiative, is working on a project about health equity in Black communities throughout Eastern Kentucky surrounding topics of mental health, diabetes, and respiratory disorders. Her team will be collecting oral histories about overall experience with these topics as well as experience with health care providers. They’re looking to capture current experiences and restore and renew relationships between patients and caregivers to get the best possible care.

Annual Appeal

It’s that time of year! Be sure to check your mailboxes in the coming weeks for a letter from our executive director, Alex Gibson. In addition to the work featured in this newsletter, we’ve had a busy year of recovery and growth. And we’d sure love your support to keep that momentum going.

Don’t Forget

The sixth annual Red Fox Storytelling Festival will be happening on October 28 in Pound, Virginia. Come for the 5K or 10K and stay for the stories, food, and fun. See the event page for more information. If you are interested in being a vendor, be sure to fill out this form

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