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Open Society Institute Project Distribution Grant Awarded to photojournalist Tim Matsui

January 29th, 2008

The Open Society Institute, a part of the Soros Foundation, awarded Tim Matsui and the FEAR Project a $22,300 Project Distribution Grant for speaker presentations in school districts and to community and professional groups in the Greater Seattle Metropolitan Area. The effective dates are January to December, 2008.

This significant award, the first of this magnitude for both Tim Matsui and the FEAR Project, will permit the FEAR to expand its already existing speaker program currently presenting in three area school districts and to professional and community groups. Each presentation is a facilitated discussion accompanied by FEAR multimedia, photographed and recorded by Tim Matsui, hosted by either a professional in the field of violence prevention and education, victim services, or legal, or by a survivor capable of speaking about his or her personal experience in the context of the media.

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For me, the beauty of this grant is not only in the professional recognition, but it further solidifies the organization’s structure and commitment. The board members and volunteer ‘staff’ I work with now have a significant sum of money to manage and an explicit end goal to achieve.

I, personally, will not see much of this money unless I choose to be compensated for speaking; the funds will support the *organization’s* efforts to distribute this media, not mine.

And that is way cool. As beautiful as the FEAR Project is, and as proud as I am of what I–with the help of many–have been able to achieve so far, it is a commitment that weighs heavily upon me.

The more others identify with the project, and come to own it, the happier I will be because I have long since realized the potential in the Project and how there is no way I will be able to achieve it on my own.

If you’d asked me when I made the very first FEAR slide show, or became a Blue Earth Alliance sponsored project if I thought I’d be running a non profit in five years…I’d have asked how much you’d had to drink that night. But here we are…

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