Asha tells us about Youth Radio and teaching young students video, music production and design, all rooted strongly in journalism. Instead of having journalists tell stories for young people, Youth Radio’s mission is to have young people tell the stories themselves. Through the West Side Stories case study and interviews with local community, Asha and Youth Radio educate us about the issues of gentrification in a unique personal voice.

Video shot by Jessica Jones and Michelle Hoy, edited by Michelle Hoy.

Audio setup by Daniel Craig. Photos by Gabriel Be.

About the speaker

Asha Richardson is a Program Manager at Youth Radio, the Peabody Award-winning youth-driven production company in downtown Oakland that serves as NPR’s Youth Desk. In 2010, she co-founded the Innovation Lab there, where young people combine journalism + coding + design to create mobile apps and interactive news stories. Asha’s driving passion is to diversify tech of the future and help youth of color develop expertise in data and computer science to make the changes they seek in the world.

The Innovation Lab’s latest projects include Oaktown, an interactive map of gentrification in Oakland; Mood Ring, a mobile app that enables teens to track their feelings through emojis; and several interactives about juvenile justice. Asha’s students collaborate with professional designers and developers from MIT, UC Berkeley, and our industry friends.

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