Our Version Media® CIC is a community media enterprise dedicated to increasing positive and authentic representation of Southampton’s black and marginalised communities.
We were founded in 2019 by Southampton-born broadcast journalist and community activist, Veronica Gordon, after seeing the harm that the media’s persistent demonisation of black and marginalised groups was having on people’s wellbeing and life chances. She combined her fifteen years’ journalism expertise with her fifteen years community activism to create Our Version Media’s training, consultancy and services.
Our work is underpinned by our core values:
1. Everyone can be empowered to tell their own stories
Our founder, broadcast journalist turned social entrepreneur, Veronica Gordon, has fifteen years’ experience across TV, radio and digital media. Here’s her insider tip: with the right training and support, anybody can successfully tell their own stories in creative and compelling ways.
2. Southampton’s diversity should be recognised, acknowledged and celebrated
We love Southampton and believe that everyone who calls Southampton their home should feel represented, included and have a sense of belonging. We want everyone from black and minoritised communities to have media skills and confidence to tell and share their own, authentic stories.
3. Authentic storytelling is key to building authentic relationships
We strive to help organisations who want to better connect with Southampton’s black and ethnically diverse communities. We want everyone to have the skills to create authentic, inclusive and impactful stories using a range of media.
4. Positive stories lead to positive wellbeing
We know that the media’s demonisation and negative portrayal of black and marginalised communities is harming people’s mental health and wellbeing [read our survey findings]. By equipping people with media skills to tell their own stories, we’re making positive and authentic stories more visible. This is boosting self-esteem and wellbeing, while counteracting negative stereotypes at the same time.
5. Individuals, people and organisations who are doing good in their communities should have media skills to showcase that good work
We work with individuals, communities and organisations to achieve impactful, inclusive and authentic storytelling using a range of media. We’re empowering everyone to use digital media to create and share stories that reflect their real lives, brings projects to life, and showcases their social impact – to tell those positive stories we don’t see.
Our profits are reinvested into amplifying Southampton’s black voices
We live by our values and reinvest our profits into amplifying authentic stories from Southampton’s black British, African and Caribbean communities. It’s one of the ways we’re working towards our vision of a world where black joy is seen, celebrated and accepted. We:
- Host a Black Community Coverage Clinic to deliver free media skills guidance, advice and support to black residents, community organisers/activists/volunteers and community group leaders
- Give our Mobile Storytelling training to the city’s black residents, community organisers, community activists and community volunteers for free
- Support free support and promotion for black business owners through our free Black-owned Business Directory
Do you share our values? Get in touch to explore how we can work together.