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this is the state of things i'm really happened in nineteen sixty three governor terry sanford set up the north carolina fund one of the nation's earliest anti poverty programs volunteers visit for communities in the state bringing among other things the idea that the people in those communities could call for change themselves that they could become active and become activists in the royal of the civil rights era that brought a backlash from among others then congressman jim gardner of rocky mount i think the fund has strayed from its original intent i don't think no messiah and those originally created the north carolina fund them intended that it would be developed into a very effective political organization facing such resistance the north carolina fund ended after five years this hour we look at what you talk about dealing with poverty in north carolina what works what doesn't our series understanding poverty continues to have sex this is the state of things on the lead and copper in nineteen sixty three north carolina governor terry sanford launched one of the most innovative anti poverty campaigns of the
nineteen sixties it was called the north carolina fund and the funding came from private foundations and in part from the federal office of economic opportunity from korean county in east to macomb county in the mountains north carolina fund provided money to community organizations and initiatives volunteers and workers who went into the field helps communities they are to try to come up with ways to address the conditions of poverty but just a few years into the north carolina fund initiative it ran to a backlash as some politicians took issue with that the north carolina fund they said was not just delivering services to the poor it was helping the poor gain financial stability and make political footholds in nineteen sixty eight after five years the north carolina fund was discontinued this hour as we continue our series north carolina voices understanding poverty we're going to take a closer look at those days in the sixties and the north carolina fund and very
importantly what it taught us about how best to fight poverty here we're joined in the studio by jane lee lewis who is a professor of history at unc chapel hill he has studied the war on poverty in the cells and has focused on the north carolina fund and has written about thanksgiving the stadium and we welcome your calls this hour and were you affected by the north carolina fund in the sixties did you work for an organization that was part of it was your community visited by volunteers from the north carolina fund our numbers one eight seven seven nine six to nineteen sixty eight that's one eight seven seven nine six to nine eight six to what i'm sure is we don't have to start from the very beginning what exactly was the north carolina fund of the north carolina fund is use it was established in nineteen sixty three today i would call it in india non governmental organization it was a very innovative wunderkind anti poverty agency nothing like it in any other state in the country and it's served fundamentally as a kind of laboratory which policymakers
volunteers community leaders could experiment with ways to the poor might be involved in relieving their own condition and george s are probably put it best george was executive director he said that the north carolina fonz purpose was to create a possible so it was at the very beginning and had a number of volunteers who were college students who in the summers would go to some communities that's right its first program was so big north carolina volunteers in those volunteers work for two summers of sixty four and sixty five hundred and the first summer two hundred and fifty in the next move student volunteers men and women black and white from every college campus in the state which in itself was remarkable if you think about the context of the mid nineteen sixties to be putting coed volunteer tames interracial teams out in communities across still very similar to this it was very strong and this was potentially an issue and in the east you know the fire was started in nineteen sixty three to address
poverty in the state and then this was before president johnson launched his national war on poverty what was it says that maine governor terry sanford decided he wanted to do this here in north carolina in particular what put a couple things first is surely the experience of war or to stanford and his generation went off to war they fought alongside african american soldiers they also saw in europe and in the pacific the dreadful brutal consequences of political ideologies social systems built on a sense of ethnic and racial superiority so they came home with a very deep sense that the south had to change that it simply couldn't continue as it always been and of course it was a sense it was shared by african americans in north carolina and across the south because they were fighting world words that's right and they've been involved in what the handling cd called the double the campaign that his victory against fascism in europe and the pacific victory against racism here at home there was also building economic crisis in north carolina agriculture was
being mechanized tens of thousands of people being turned off the land again world war two had been a technological ward that war of science and research and anyone able to say look over the horizon could say that america's future prosperity arrested in what we call a knowledge economy today again sanford understood that north carolina simply could never compete in that new economy if it continued to have a population that was under educated ill health and four and probably most of all he was worried about a population about a society as he said in look magazine in nineteen sixty three reid and with hate and prejudice the barriers to development now when terry sanford pitched the idea of the north carolina fund to which didn't get state money as i understand it they got it got federal money on that and also a seven million dollars from the ford foundation largely this was not a private grants
to pitch it as something that was going to address the race issue or was that something he had to be careful as a politician and in the early sixties in north carolina about addressing to keep wondering did he emphasize we're going to do something about education and something about income and poverty it was something he had to finance in and sanford had done that throughout his political career but he had been involved in the e and i didn't fit the senate campaign with fried port a gram in which race had been a powerful issue and he understood that that issue was that it was the third rail of southern politics and he had provided leadership the center's own children to an integrated school and rollin he certainly talked about race but he put an emphasis on education and on the broader benefit to the state at that large you know so when he says the center's north carolina fund in nineteen sixty three which we should point out is going into his last year in office as governor and you could only serve one term and caroline at that point and so
he's one of the facets of this is that it gets a couple hundred volunteers college students to go out to the communities so the point of it was to alleviate poverty word these volunteers in any way going out and doing physical work to improve the conditions at what exactly did they do when these college students arrived in and say urban centers such as durham or more rural communities that were very poor that's right a lot of the focus as we said earlier was primarily education and that was a big issue in north carolina if you look at north carolina nineteen sixty about the fifty percent of all high school students drop out before getting a degree nearly a quarter of adults over twenty five had no more than a sixth grade education so the focus initially was on education the volunteers initially or in the field doing primarily tutoring projects and recreation projects and there was this sense that what's interesting is to go back and go into the archives here in chapel
hill and read the letters from the students and this is a remarkably idealistic sense that they just simply had to go out this summer address those inadequacies of the poor poverty would be alleviated get people to really help them get into you do you say what programs for young people but over the course is summers especially in the next summer they become also involved in improving housing improving sanitation and they begin to be involved as your suggested some in political organizing because the volunteers themselves are changed by the experience and very very encouraging those people who live in those communities themselves and we should say an insult and ministry news this is ruby african americans and this is the early sixties since folks are still little wary of service is the thing about this is volatile stuff and it's interesting to watch the students changing amid go on
the field in we have their daily diaries in the archives and you can watch the experience unfolds and one of things i was fasting is is young men and women they go and they feel that they are very liberal and open minded politically on the issue of race and then they find themselves tested going to have to put those ideals and practice at one a woman i think some of the best she said at the time the summer was over the burden of my poverty and been lifted as she had learned about fundamental human commonalities across across the race long time i sit in your assessment of the north carolina fund make much headway and the race issue it made some and not enough certainly you can see individual people's lives change the fallen became very important to plant in nineteen sixty six in providing both resources in the means for african american communities to organize
field voter registration campaigns to become more involved in politics at the same time i think you can say that on the things of the north carolina fund in that he and could not overcome was the deep invented power of race is a fundamental dividing line in north carolina politics and this is something that is very bad very very far in the states history on the one hand the state has a fascinating history by racial politics do reconstruction more whites than any other southern state cross the race line and joined by rich republic alliance in the eighty nine is the same sort of thing happens both instances they're defeated by white supremacist campaign which is interested in affirming the sensuality of races oppose class as a fundamental organizing principle it's a solid thing the race card as it plays when the class that's right and well it was an understanding that if he had a biracial alliance you're going to have one kind of politics if you have a society organized around a race rather than economic
shared economic concerns that a different kind of politics and one the ways that frankly an economy a cheap labor was sustained in north carolina for the early twentieth century was through that in effect divide and conquer strategy that prevented working class whites and african americans are coming together in a political alliance and still today i think you can see the ways that that's around us and a political discourse that suggests that we think about but anti poverty efforts is a kind of zero sum game that is that if african americans came whites luiz we're talking with history professor jim lewis from unc about the north carolina fund to which you have a five year run in north carolina in the mid nineteen sixties was one of the very few first anti poverty campaigns in and he stayed and became a model for lyndon johnson's war on poverty at the federal level and more of our conversation with journalist and talk with a couple of people who took part in the north carolina fund and we'd welcome
your calls are numbers one eight seven seven nine six to ninety six to support for the status comes from the corporation for public broadcasting and listeners who support north carolina public radio are this is the state of things i melinda then got up and we're talking today about north carolina's own war on poverty it was called the north carolina fund it began in nineteen sixty three when governor terry sanford introduced to state it ran for about five years and we're talking about the legacy of that fund were taking your calls it won eight seven seven nine six to nine eight six two you'd like to join the conversation witnesses unc chapel hill history professor jim lucas who has written about the north carolina fund and right now we're joined by shirley hise who is executive director of economic development and the shape of the chamber of commerce for mitchell county and enjoys clayton who is director of upward bound at unc chapel hill and education program that targets low income high school students
welcome surely has enjoys clayton greece and we go we should say we have you here because you took part in the north carolina fund forty years ago and let's start with you first joyce and you grew up in the country yeah i grew up in world tarrant county which is between rich mine and the hayman north carolina and i grew up on a farm share cropping by getting with a tobacco farmer though i work in the field advantage in the sun so it's really about the eu were how old when the north carolina fund came into being and you took part in the switch i was the gulf war ii in college at north carolina college a door and now north carolina central university so in the slammer and fifty seven fifty eight on my project a faded as a community organizer and prior to that operation breakthrough as
a community organizer and i also work at a north carolina especially with summer of night can affect bp we know what to do as a community organizer for the primary responsibility was to go to a community and help that community to help itself through helping him to know what was available to me it had feathers in that particular community it was helping them by finding out what it lives they felt they needed to make their lives better it was helping them learn to read and it can make bread and you i argue all constituent flee and to help them with health and education issues are and making sure that we would try to help improve the quality of their lives and help them receive all the lights and privileges they were impaneled to
we talk about making themselves heard that either has constituencies we're talking here about realizing they could have some political races using it power word employee and that's what margaret you all about the resistance that did you run into resistance with that because we have heard tell that you know during the mid sixties the civil rights era was still roiling and there were those who are in power and they need to feel like these upstarts and activists coming to an animal that only the power structure and are those who have admitted he did it the way it is always an article you had a bat call other areas of the community of thousand people even within the community that you tried to help that we've afraid or hobby a home we're for each does speak up well what has claimed stan alive for a moment please i want to talk now to
joe shirley hise you you grow up ahead in the other part of the state's southern appalachian mitchell county and you worked for the north carolina fund as a teenager and a college student at bay and your own those people in your own community you grew up or you dig yourself you are you are the target of the work for the north carolina fund i work at a high school teacher and then of a college i worked on a program called page which isn't great for fadi program and i worked with the health department and the health clinic they had brought a painful for the shooting here is to work with the county announced blade on between the doctor so you know how it's how was the north carolina fund received when when it came to michel aoun have these outsiders coming in ha ha of the area for britain for one it kind of back pay if local politicians have of what kind of administered by when the community action with them
but in north carolina should say when he stands resort him to use their image about what are behaving in twenty ten and no bite they did not have any in play your input or event like badminton legends within their family that they had no control over and so there was a lot of controversy about death anytime you're on the party you're bringing people to a level of power that they have not had before settling the joyous was just talking about and when you hear that you would have a lot of controversy to help and other people are going to have to share power of voting or whatever it turns out that they end though and protecting the shia party the very complex and complicated the heat that measure moving people and different will total level and if a local politician or the church of the community or whatever it gets to be a very complex thing so did when he did it were to succeed
at some degree i think we think the impact of when the community action in terms of health clinical being a major candidate would never been available for reform in school with the help of paper charts i think we have transportation very incomplete right here nowhere people can ride back and forth the clinic that we would never have spat had not been for you a question for you both surely has an amateur scouting would something like the north carolina fund work to david went to those communities tutu during your case joyce or to mitchell county or was that at a certain place in time the north carolina fund i we cut poverty philip fear that packs the program before we now outdated a program that will give help a program that will help him get an education that will help you get better health care and improve the quality of your life if you needed and i think today it would be just as
relevant set well again i think the issue of poverty is a very complex character and with an actual over the weekend in the local paper had interviewed him and asking him he's working on the poverty issue in chapel hill and asking about i didn't plan to run for president and his response was well i'm working on the parties you have analysts think that it was really appalling that in his life and then the party and i think that the problem that people understand what party of poverty to a different level remember it will take a young and poverty and eight here we have pinpoint one unemployment rate we have fifty eight percent of students graduate from high school there for creating another level of poverty how we need programs that we need programs that work we're talking today about the north carolina fund which between nineteen sixty three and nineteen sixty eight sixty nine was an effort
in north carolina to alleviate poverty and operated for awhile with volunteers from college two colleges who went into a number of the poor communities in north carolina both urban and rural were talking with joyce clayton who grew up in durham who was a volunteer with the north carolina fund and shirley hise was also a volunteer in mitchell county julie lewis is with us he is a history professor at unc chapel hill and then i'd also like to get your opinion on this to shirley enjoys should have you talked a moment ago about how this was a breakthrough in the early sixties because you had not only men and women going out coed but also biracial are on interracial teams going into communities and that was something big in the early sixties in north carolina blacks and whites working together at as equals there but you've also written that is some communities the north carolina fund i had more of an impact and more so in the black
communities because in white communities you've written was a poor whites did not so we want this level playing field with them they owe the blacks in their community that's right and when he may be the exception there in western north carolina were there for the american population was smaller and so this issue didn't play with quite the same political force poses volunteers went into communities that began to meet the resistance that shirl enjoys were talking about that began to understand the poverty was not something inherent in the poor but was a matter of politics and economics and see you watch them began to hunker down on the screen is caitlin african american communities and become involved in organizing the world that is helping people mobilize for federal money for something like head start or is helping organize a voting rights campaign so that poor people might have a political voice that is a lot harder to
carry off in white communities but to clean the piedmont and the east where again the racial issue played with such force and i think we have to remember there was a way in which call welfare from the beginning had a color and many north carolinians monson that color was black no that's not the factory audit but that was that was the perception there was a sense i think among many working class whites of the war on poverty was tied up with the civil rights movement it was tied up with a challenge to the racial order that assured them no matter how low their status and social system might be african americans were always below them and that probably was the way to my mind the single most difficult challenge for the north carolina fund and i think one might argue for ending world poverty efforts in a room tone will surely has anything you grow up white in in the mountains of north carolina and jeanne was saying that the mountain area may have been the exception to this resistance among whites to north carolina fund for perhaps owing to that that there were
foreigners a far smaller percentage of populations african american than it businesses that make sense to you they hit a fisherman is correct but i would go on to add that when a community action allows for the first time women to be in leadership roles it the workers they would go out into the community the head of the head start program the head of the neighborhood youth core problem turned out to be when we women and i think the one hand to provide an opportunity for women to be in leadership roles and that kind of a first for instance is you here at uber of african american an interim did you find that sad that resistance to the north carolina fund found among whites interim that james talk about i would agree with chants that attitudes racial from our movie in some way and kept individuals who really really needed the flow river flow from fully operative with a basis we went out as a tree that was
very diverse we went out as an example of what could happen and i think then a lot of reading that was very threatening to have black and white working together getting along very good emotive that audio alone challenge the authority but that part of it breakdown the fun of our own stereotypes so going back out into communities and helping other people tried to break down those characters typical i believe let it be let it hit on edge and we were more successful in the african american community and i wonder is strategically and tactically speaking here not necessarily an ethically speaking but to strategically speaking might help there's a lot to bite off at once with segregation so much and force to send blacks and white communities whites and a black communities or not if your point was to alleviate poverty
first of all in well us it was a lot to bite off but i think there was no other way around it because one has to understand that historically poverty and jim crow segregation have gone hand in hand in the history of this day throughout the late nineties and into the early twentieth century the state's economy was built on cheap labor and cheap labor it was sustained by a system of jim crow that kept working people black and white in north carolina divided one against lee other so as difficult it might have been i think anyone who was realistic understood that you simply could not attack one problem without the other you have written about the resistance that was there and we heard a clip of tape earlier this hour from then congressman jim gardner who was saying he was in congress at the time and was calling out against the north carolina fund for having for those people who were part of it and they don't target buy it for becoming an act an effective political force right
and it was becoming a political force others talked about the north carolina fund sponsoring what they called guerilla warfare there were references a course outside as janitors that was always way that change was described in the south our poor people wouldn't do there's someone must've put them up to it but i think this is surely enjoys make clear earlier but the north on a fond of the end of the day what any anti poverty effort in the end of the day had to be about was changing the structure of a political and economic power and privilege and that is probably the deepest most fundamental challenge one compose shirley hise did the north carolina fund affect the way you look at poverty or have your views about how to alleviate poverty how they evolved since your work four decades ago with the north carolina fund helped and my question being what would suggest we were just pretty well i'm a retired high school history teacher that have gone and economic development in the
chamber of commerce and i think the way out of poverty is through education and i think it has to be to a quality education and i think with rural areas lag me adequate facilities to provide a quality education for first they live in terms of computers staff activated the outside there and i think if people in michoacan negro out of poverty i think they will part of it in movies that we improve our educational and the fake thing i felt my way out of poverty to education and now i'm actually going on to go in part get out of poverty would be a college education and go on farther than that how that affected the profound way and we were looking at how to get out of poverty i agree with shirley that education is a league and a way it enables people to arm direct their own not choices that and to deepen after that their own
destiny and that youth that way that what i was taught every child in poverty there a way out of it was to get educated and i was affected by a federal program the national defense that helped make an appearance here no money of your education the other day a year helping people believe in them though and to know that they can make a difference that that we could get back the latvian activists and void york and fell and that but education of the king but forty years on monday are people who are in poverty not getting a message doesn't need to be reinforced and sometimes it on continually i think that it needs to be continually voice louder because they are the old children that are not getting equal access for example the higher
education are when we look at that all five day for us and we're looking at low income with peeled talking about all the campers vandevender eligible to receive a third visit to help them in the north of higher education institutions and we should say that you are director of upward bound and that's a federally funded organization that's designed to do that to help low income area and that the vatican said if you look at the definition of a party movement that faith or the lack of restrictions and certainly in rural western north carolina you know later the people that write haiti republican party says here and we have about twenty cakes here economically that really lacked resources in order to provide a quality education for the children here
and so we let the report me throw candy at county an ivory county and madison county and all of canada led the report are you trying to and i wonder if your work now is shirley hise you were involved in education as a teacher for years but now working with economic development and mitchell county is the idea to bring the businesses there so that you have the resources and to improve people's lives where we have a problem with the chamber collection of a lifetime where we encourage goes by using the unity here whistling highs and i'd like to thank you so much for being with us today and thank you so much shirley hise interest they were both volunteers and workers with the north carolina fund in the sixties interest clayton is director of work now that unc chapel hill shirley hise is director of the chamber of commerce is economic development commission and mitchell county just ahead we'll get to more of your calls one eight seven seven nine sixty nine eight sixty we're talking about the north carolina fund and
this is the state of things i'm going to uncover and we are talking this hour about the north carolina fund in the nineteen sixties this was a five year experiment to alleviate poverty in north carolina and it was a four runner in some ways of model for what became then president lyndon johnson's war on poverty jim lewis is with us he's a professor history at unc chapel hill and has written about the north carolina find and joining us now is david dodson who is the president of md see this is an organization based in chapel hill is one of two remaining institutions they got their start with the north carolina fund and david doesn't has been the organization for the past seventeen years and he's here in the studio welcome david thank you very much or nbc stood we should say at one point from empowered us corporation what exactly does it do well in the days it was founded and we still do this and dc was created to do a couple of things to help north
carolina make the transition from a segregated to an integrated workforce to help the economy make the transition from an agricultural to an industrial economy and as our founders said to help the society and particularly its workers learn how to no longer work by the son but learn to work by the clock so it was an attempt to accelerate and and ameliorate the natural transition from a agricultural way of life as the basis of our economy to an industrial wanted to make sure disadvantage people were integrated into economic up now going from agricultural to industrial in this we've been in the nineteen sixties yes and today we've seen so many scenarios industrial jobs the manufacturing jobs in north carolina evaporated in by the tens of thousands and hundreds of thousand exactly now it's from the industrial to the knowledge based service
economy on that values the kind of education that we've been talking about our guest been talking about earlier and that's just as wrenching and difficult transition and it's creating i think importantly as much dislocation social distress and disconnection from opportunity as the previous transition did so in a sense om many of the needs that needs to help the need to help people make a transition from a vulnerable situation to a more secure economic situation remains work that we have to do today in north carolina around the south and around the country so the organization publishes the state of the self report every two years what trends are you seeing with poverty in in the region an end to north carolina in particular well you know at the big issue is that poverty is the inability to burn build assets and create the pathways to a middle class life and the best predictor of a person's ability to
earn is the ability to gain an educational football educational attainment so finishing high school and going to something beyond whether it be a community college degree or a ba is an absolute precondition for being able to be on that path for a middle class existence and what we know now is that far too many people and particularly people of color om r n adequately educated in qom in the society we have to date there also is a significant rural urban divide so poverty and the inability to make the transition to the new economy has to do with people and it has to do with the place i should say that in our series about understanding poverty we will be talking about that were in rural urban divide is something we like him a boil down poverty the idea of poverty too investment that is theirs to say investing in education we need to be a master's degree of the fishing
harbor high school investing the time in that and suddenly our i think it's this is simplistic but education sets one up to work and earn at higher levels and working and earning a higher levels allows a person or a family to build assets and assets provide the intergenerational foundation to be able to continue on that path to prosperity so education plus earnings plus asset seemed to us at least an empty seat to be a basic formula to help people exit poverty and moved into a more secure situation a middle class jewish but what about somebody who is not senate say seventeen years old and they have to make a choice between finishing high school but somebody who might be at seventeen has two kids and can't possibly do that we do mean casey well i think it is twenty three and has three kids in and has to work two jobs i think we have to recognize that
there are such folks out there and in fact they need to be deep social supports to help people get back on the pathways to exercise that formula that we know works that's why community colleges are we talk about infrastructure the infrastructure of opportunity the community college system that we have a north carolina is perhaps i think the most crew local one for helping all people the young person is dropped at the adult who has to re skill get back on the pathway to opportunity that plus community and social support om have to be things that are in place where very lucky in north carolina where very lucky in that we have a pervasive community college infrastructure that's in the mountains as well as in the piedmont as well as in the cut at the coast and that gives us an enormous foundation for doing what's necessary so i'm absolutely yes we've got to make sure that every person the economy to day demands it that every person have the chance to get educated to the level where
they can make a contribution and you lose discuss gets what david dodson is saying it gets better with terry sanford was emphasizing at the get go what they are drawn fund which was was it as a story is very interesting to listen to david because i'm sitting here thinking this is a wonderful example of how we in a way have to rediscover something that a generation before understood so well if you look at the time for him the knowledge economy education to the comedic role if any college system the research triangle park the north carolina fund in the north carolina came to college system were all launched within a five year window the generation before us understood so well the ways in which those things were connected i'd this is a place i think where we could stand to go back and recover some of that understanding when i served well by having forgotten this period you know and i think if i may is that one of the
one of the reasons north carolina has done so well relative to other and other southern states is that we didn't make those investments early on and recapitalized on them we had the courage to extend them out across the divisions of race in ways that other states didn't and that allowed us to move ahead now you go to figure out what that foundation is for the next generation so in this business is more of philosophical question about defining poverty which we try to do yesterday on the program we mentioned a r t p being born in the sixties and that has brought a lot of technological jobs and arguably has raised the income of those type of place it's those research development places technologically base not just in the tribal area but elsewhere north carolina has raised perhaps the average income here but we're still dealing with people who don't have as much an angeles you're you wrote in your writings about the north carolina fund that some of the same things that
terry sanford was trying to address forty years ago are with us today one of them is income gap that's right and then david cerny emphasize this the importance of education and some recent statistics actually suggest a difference and have a college degree and a high school diploma is a hunter is a doubling of lifetime earnings and in our challenge now is that is a dose of his rural urban divide were nowhere to north carolina's an urban ninety five piedmont corridor of north carolina that's doing pretty well compared to the rest of the country another rural north carolina that increasingly has been left behind and this is again where they might take a lesson from the north carolina fund one of the important things it did was to help build coalitions across class lines to some degree a close race on side as effectively as it might have across geographical lines to develop a sense of the port not as those people but as one of us is people whose fates and
prospects are very much tied to or tomorrow and i think it's increasingly difficult to north carolina's i teach my classes i'm struck again and again i think we're all or less the same age sitting around this table ers may be the last generation north carolinians who hit someone you partly firsthand you may have grown up as i did in a comfortable middle class arty the hell so much you know poverty somewhere in the family a party had a human face i think increasingly in the pickling has divided north carolina that's not true probably more so than ever from many north carolinians their fellow north carolinian soup or are those people and to that's also something we really need to pay a lot of attention to use it and what if it's the case more now or has it always been this way that jack neighborhoods are divided on non economic we've gotten perhaps best some of the segregation in the past racial segregation neighbors but basically where you live you tend to live with people in a similar economic strap
and some of that is that the us are so much more urban studied again my classes won't talk with students about this it's always the rural students who get it and get it first because again they may come from relatively comfortable households but the fact of the matter is that people who don't have those resources are close by and and they know them like if you grow up today in suburban lawyer greensboro charlotte for folks who most part of those folks a liver of one of a subtle talent in the neighborhoods you encouraged not to visit but if you live in a small town you probably more exposed to that you think small rural town maybe that somewhere in the middle ages or live on what i think is true in the last census north carolina really kept from being one of if not the most the state with a large largest rural population to being primarily now we are an urban or a mouse suburban stay and with that the kind of daily contact i think does does
reseed so the problems of poverty in north carolina really i would say are in are the few inner cities that we had and in remote rural areas that are disconnected from the global economy in some fundamental way and that in some ways the same two part challenge we had forty years ago i happen to live in durham and five miles from our t p in the north the central durham south the central door and you have people living economically and early twentieth century existence young people who have no sense and no connection and no preparation for the twenty first century knowledge economy that is a short bus ride away our challenge is how to bridge the nineteenth century with twenty first century opportunity so that everybody has a chance to benefit from the legacy of those investments made forty years ago and that's that's i think our deep social problem as jim said how to have
privileged people recognize that we're all in the same boat with others we did elsie in pittsboro hi there ailsa thanks for all the allied force you have a question for our guests are common well i just wanted to play the island and they in time when i worked at the north carolina one of the many people who were there made the comment that there were so many ideas too coming out of the woodwork some of that actually coming from people have thrown more ideas that were good ideas into the wastepaper basket and most organizations that moment so what was their critically good idea that you thought to work toward should have been adopted you know i when we made a long time and i ended up i went nowhere and actually became part of an eighty before it thank you and the
very integrated organization and i think that really like why young old women all lot of women with jobs that were very very unique harriet they were not women holding down what i considered to be really professional job and many places that at the north carolina says i just didn't see it with really the case and oh and i one point i was going to have the training and it was actually the other immigration part of it is of course there were awful lot of people from other places that i've moved here from new jersey so i can well tell you with a pretty vague jump from new jersey to we're working with a program that are about all the state of north carolina did anybody ever call you an outside agitator that
really imagine that the ad that when out for a vulnerability they you laughingly called people who work at the headquarters of a wind farm and we were about neighbors and everybody else who worked there they are limiting i think and they were really fine your program yesterday we were the real people we did the real war did serious with that i thought i would note that a budget with that anyone that you know in and not in rio the derogatory term has a perfectly and we're making that comment he states think of a lot of the people who came through that program that had come our experiences working with migrant workers in other things and i don't even know what a migrant work but worthen are the thud and i found myself faced with doing a fish that training program for people with ana work with little progress in the migrant train and it's a wonderful points here again it is
a spoiler history has overlooked importance of the north carolina fund korean leadership opportunities for women i think i would also emphasize this notion that she offered us that it was an incubator for ideas and that was by design it was meant to be a laboratory and you mentioned to that become a political resistance that the sanford was getting late and his political record your earlier is a wine which the north carolina find it is is designed to insulate it someone put a somewhat politically it's a non governmental organizations say north carolina fund sells look it's official but it was independent and its funding and a structure it was an answerable to flow state legislature that's largely by design he gave it he created a kind of free space in an otherwise very difficult political terrain yet generate ideas for we should say in them the closing seconds here that there was money available to continue that the ford foundation was it not offering more grants to continue the north carolina fund but after five years that the state chose not to exercise it was close and that's kind of a complicated issue now i think it's if i can
north carolina philanthropy has continued to support these things and that's one reason we're still much needed they would like to thank you both for joining us jim lewis is history professor unc chapel hill and david johnson is president of him dc which is one of the remaining organizations from the north carolina fund thank you so much support for north carolina voices understanding poverty comes from the aging fletcher foundation the center for documentary studies at duke university does in haiti julie implies family foundation martin taylor ph of laura and michael and more greater a rock a foundation and the north carolina humanities council support for the state of things comes from the corporation for public broadcasting if you have a comment about the program or email addresses guess it at the unc largely thanks for listening
The State of Things
North Carolina Voices:Understanding Poverty
The North Carolina Fund
Producing Organization
WUNC (Radio station : Chapel Hill, N.C.)
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WUNC (Chapel Hill, North Carolina)
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Episode Description
Discussion of the North Carolina Fund and what it taught about dealing with poverty in North Carolina. The North Carolina Fund was a five-year initiative to fight poverty launched in 1963 by Governor Terry Sanford. At the time, half of the people living in the state were poor by some estimates, more than 40% of students did not graduate from 8th grade, and factory workers earned some of the lowest industrial wages in the nation. The North Carolina Fund initiated experimental projects in education, health, job training, housing, and community development. It focused on the links between poverty and race and served as a model for the national "War on Poverty".
Series Description
North Carolina Voices: Understanding Poverty is a series of reports, documentaries and call-in programs that aired on North Carolina Public Radio-WUNC in April 2005.
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The State of Things is a live program devoted to bringing the issues, personalities, and places of North Carolina to our listeners.
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Talk Show
Social Issues
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Guest: Leloudis, Jim
Guest: Dodson, David
Host: Penkava, Melinda
Producer: Hanford, Emily
Producing Organization: WUNC (Radio station : Chapel Hill, N.C.)
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North Carolina Public Radio - WUNC
Identifier: NCP9901/2 (WUNC)
Format: Audio CD
Duration: 50:25
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Chicago: “The State of Things; North Carolina Voices:Understanding Poverty; The North Carolina Fund,” 2005-04-00, WUNC, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed September 25, 2023,
MLA: “The State of Things; North Carolina Voices:Understanding Poverty; The North Carolina Fund.” 2005-04-00. WUNC, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. September 25, 2023. <>.
APA: The State of Things; North Carolina Voices:Understanding Poverty; The North Carolina Fund. Boston, MA: WUNC, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from