Pitch to Making Contact!

Hi Freelancers,


Making Contact is an award-winning, 29-minute weekly magazine/documentary-style public affairs program heard on 140 radio stations in the USA, Canada, South Africa, and Australia.  Amplifying voices and perspectives rarely heard in mainstream media, Making Contact focuses on the human realities of politics and the connections between local and global events, emphasizing positive and creative ways to solve problems.


We are seeking pitches on these themes



“Turn it down!”- Noise pollution

Charter Cities and Special Economic Zones

2013: A Year for Criminal Justice Refor?m


Please scroll down for more detail on each theme. Please reply to pitches@radioproject.org.




We’re looking for reporters on, or near, the Navajo Nation, who can help us produce 2 sound rich segments about how each stage of the coal power production process impacts people.  The complete program will trace the impacts of energy production backwards, from the light-switch to the coal mine.                    


1. We want to hear from people working at, and living beside, the Navajo Power Station, about how the plant affects their lives. Follow the coal into the power plant and introduce us to the people along the way.

2. In this segment, we want to hear from miners and people living on lands beside the Peabody Mine on the Navajo Nation. What has it been like working in the mines? How has it affected their health, their families, their communities, and traditions? How have people still living on the land been affected? How have they remained on the land, despite pressure to leave, and what are their ideas for an alternative future?


“Turn it down!”- Noise pollution


What effects does noise pollution have on people? We want to hear stories from people living with consistently loud and intrusive noise. There should be good, clear evidence that shows how noise pollution is responsible for impacts people are experiencing on their health and/or well being. It could be communities living on the edge of an airport, whose lives are disrupted by the sound of jet engines; or children whose concentration at home is negatively impacted because they live in an actively noisy neighborhood. This 8 minute segment would fit into a program that looks at the wider effects of noise on people and animals. Your segment could also examine how people are coping with intrusive noise, and if they are organizing to try and stop, or mitigate the effects of it.


Charter Cities and Special Economic Zones—“Sure, You Can do that Here!”


The proposal to build a ‘charter city’ in Honduras, exempt from major, environmental, and other laws on the surrounding nation, appears to have been defeated for now. But the idea of creating such zones continues to gain strength, under many different names.  We are looking for on-the ground reports from Free Trade Zones, Special Economic Zones, proposed Charter Cities and elsewhere.  We’d like to know what its like to live and/or work in one of these areas, and how their development has affected the surrounding region and country. We’d also like to hear stories of resistance; of communities working to stop such zones from being created—or perhaps fighting to regain their rights from the inside of one that already exists.



2013: A Year for Criminal Justice Reform?


We are planning a show looking back at some major developments this year, which put the criminal justice system under a microscope, and appear to have led to some changes.


This show will likely look at:

-the successful ‘phone justice’ movement-giving more affordable access to phones in prisons.

-growing discontent with solitary confinement, and prisoner hunger strikes in California and Gitmo

-Attorney general Eric Holder’s talk of drug sentencing reform.


We have the phone justice segment taken care of, but maybe you have been gathering tape on one of the other two topics—or another theme you think fits within the frame of how the US’ criminal justice policies are changing.





This call for pitches is for segments of about 8 minutes, but we also occasionally take longer pieces (12 or 26 minutes). For shorter pieces we generally pay $350 per story. As with any pitches you send us, please check out our show and read our guidelines before you pitch.http://www.radioproject.org/production/submission-guidelines/


Consider the following. Does the story:


  • Link grassroots issues and human realities to national or international trends?
  • Give listeners a historical, political, or social context of major national and international events?

  • Shed light on social and economic inequities?
  • Explore any alternatives or solutions?


Send pitches to pitches@radioproject.org. Please be detailed but succinct, and include a description of your idea, narrative/story arc, interview subjects, scenes, and sounds/ambi. If you’re pitching to us for the first time, please include a brief bio and relevant audio clips.


We look forward to hearing from you!


Nancy Lopez, Andrew Stelzer & George Lavender

Making Contact producers

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2 thoughts on “Pitch to Making Contact!”

  1. Again, you’d have to contact the show directly for this information… my guess is they’ll accept pitches until they find one they like. But I can’t say when exactly that will be.

  2. I see this page is dated October 4th but nothing helps one understand ‘by when’ submissions need to be relayed (re the catagories…
    Coal, “Turn it down!”- Noise pollution, Charter Cities and Special Economic Zones, 2013: A Year for Criminal Justice Reform – for examples). Can you give atleast approximate times that you expect/hope pieces in particular catagories will go on air? It’s discouraging if one cannot get a more firm understanding of the lead times. Something like, “Submittals for these themes are very welcomed now through ______(date)” – or some such.

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