AUGUST 2, 2023
The Vonage Foundation Expands Partnership With StoryCorps Powering Connections for More Than 36000 Individuals
Connections bridge generations, offer support, preserve memories and keep families together despite distance and circumstance
HOLMDEL, N.J., Aug. 2, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Vonage, a global leader in cloud communications helping businesses accelerate their digital transformation, continues to expand its partnership with StoryCorps, the national non-profit organization dedicated to recording, preserving, and sharing the stories of people of all backgrounds and beliefs. Since launching StoryCorps Connect in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, an initiative to engage Americans in StoryCorps interviews conducted and recorded remotely, The Vonage Foundation has provided in-kind support to help the organization to connect more than 36,000 people across all 50 states, counteracting the isolating effects of social distancing.
Powered by the Vonage Video API, StoryCorps Connect is a free, public service platform designed to bring loved ones together when circumstances or distance keeps them physically apart. StoryCorps Connect aims to connect generations, offer a source of comfort and meaning to those who may feel isolated and alone, particularly the elderly community and, in the process, preserve the wisdom of humanity.
StoryCorps Connect uses advanced online videoconferencing technology built using the Vonage Video API and wraparound instructional tools to give participants a free, high-quality platform to record StoryCorps interviews remotely. The interviews become instantly accessible and shareable through StoryCorps' Online Archive and are preserved for future generations at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress.
"Leveraging the power of video via the Vonage Video API, StoryCorps had the potential to increase connection to others, no matter the distance between them," said Martin Olson, StoryCorps' Director of Digital and Technical Innovation. "The result of this initiative has been nothing short of phenomenal. Since joining forces with the Vonage Foundation back in 2020, we have leveraged technology and the virtual connections it enables to make a lasting and meaningful impact on more than 36,000 individuals' lives."
In a post-COVID world, StoryCorps Connect has expanded its reach via its American Pathways and Legacy programs:
- StoryCorps Legacy - providing support and technology to healthcare partners such as Stanford Health and the Oregon Health & Science University to create virtual recordings for both public health and safety education.
- American Pathways - an initiative to record, preserve, and share the stories and experiences of refugees, asylees, immigrants, and Muslims living in the United States.
"At Vonage, our vision is to accelerate the world's ability to connect and working with organizations like StoryCorps is a natural extension of that vision," said Joy Corso, Chief Marketing Officer for Vonage. "We are so proud to stand side by side with StoryCorps, helping them to bring the power of communications and human connection to all, and to create a community that uses technology to unite people around the country."
Added Olson, "Partnering with Vonage has enabled a whole new generation of interview tools for StoryCorps, making it possible for us to extend our reach into communities across the country, creating a personalized and intimate experience that stands apart from other generic video chats through commercial platforms."
The Vonage Foundation supports initiatives like StoryCorps Connect that are dedicated to bringing technology access to communities through partnerships, charitable contributions and donations of services for nonprofits. The core of this mission focuses on the advancement of global connectivity - bringing people and technology together for the greater good.
StoryCorps has also extended its outreach to other charitable organizations, continuing to work with The Vonage Foundation to bring people together through several initiatives, including:
- Military Voices Initiative - reaching veterans, military service members, and their families who may live far away through ourpersonal recordings and live virtual video calls.
- Lincoln Center Storytelling and Self Advocacy Program - providing recording options of live performances to provide disabled and neurodivergent young people access to the arts in a familiar and comforting setting.
- Bakari Foundation - making it possible for grieving families from Austin and San Antonio to honor lost loved ones with memories recorded comfortably from their own homes.
Founded in 2003, StoryCorps has given over 635,000 people, in all 50 states, the chance to record interviews about their lives. The award-winning organization preserves the recordings in its archive at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress, the largest single collection of human voices ever gathered, and shares select stories with the public through StoryCorps' podcast, NPR broadcasts, animated shorts, digital platforms, and best-selling books. These powerful human stories reflect the vast range of American experiences, engender empathy and connection, and remind us how much more we have in common than what divides us. StoryCorps is especially committed to capturing and amplifying voices least heard in the media. The StoryCorps MobileBooth, an Airstream trailer that has been transformed into a traveling recording booth, crisscrosses the country year-round gathering the stories of people nationwide. Learn more at storycorps.org.
Vonage , a global cloud communications leader, helps businesses accelerate their digital transformation. Vonage's Communications Platform is fully programmable and allows for the integration of Video, Voice, Chat, Messaging, AI and Verification into existing products, workflows and systems. The Vonage conversational commerce application enables businesses to create AI-powered omnichannel experiences that boost sales and increase customer satisfaction. Vonage's fully programmable unified communications, contact center and conversational commerce applications are built from the Vonage platform and enable companies to transform how they communicate and operate from the office or remotely - providing the flexibility required to create meaningful engagements.
Vonage is headquartered in New Jersey, with offices throughout the United States, Europe, Israel and Asia and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ericsson. To follow Vonage on Twitter, please visit www.twitter.com/vonage. To become a fan on Facebook, go to facebook.com/vonage. To subscribe on YouTube, visit youtube.com/vonage.
About The Vonage Foundation
The Vonage Foundation is focused on the power of communications and connectivity to bridge the digital divide by using technology to unlock innovation and drive creative minds with grants for curriculum, research, technical advancements, knowledge sharing and financial support, aiming to make the world we live in a vibrant interconnected community by ensuring a digital-first future is possible today.
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