PRX and Google select podcast winners for Google Podcasts creator program

In June, PRX and Google announced a new year of the accelerator, training, and funding program that was first formed in October, 2018. Today comes the announcement of winners. Twenty podcast teams from around the world, working in six languages across 11 countries, will benefit from training, mentoring, and funding up to $12,000 each.

The program’s mission is to provide a range of mentoring, material support, and financial underpinning:

  • Regular feedback on all aspects of their production, including editorial and technical input;
  • Training on topics such as storytelling, sound design, and reaching audiences through marketing and engagement;
  • Equipment and software to help meet independent production needs amid the challenging circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic; and,
  • Up to $12,000 in funding for use as they see fit for their productions.

“Google and PRX are committed to broadening the impact of stories told around the world while empowering audio creators,” said Kerri Hoffman, CEO of PRX. “As the program enters a new year, we’re proud to work with such talented producers in creating those possibilities together. On behalf of PRX, we thank all who make the Google Podcasts creator program possible.”

Here is the detail of the 20 participating podcasts:

Based on a monthly support group where participants connect and share their personal experiences and stories as non-binary and queer individuals from the Middle East and North Africa region, A3deh – قعدة offers a safe space and community for free expression, documenting and storytelling around bodies, gender, and sexuality.

Veteran broadcast journalists Crystal Chavez and Renata Sago convene inspiring conversations devoted to disruptors redefining how journalism is done. The comical Latina and Black duo share their lived experiences as women who chucked the deuces to majority-white newsrooms to pursue their own big dreams. They talk with storytellers from a diversity of backgrounds – mostly not white people- who are running their own bureaus, launching their own shows, establishing their own journalism models, and dreaming up the future of the media industry.

From navigating mental health journeys and the emotional complexities of miscarriages to stretching the boundaries with BDSM and polyamory, Buddha the 4th and Hugh Zeau define and identify toxic and healthy love frameworks, and more, all while taking ownership of who they were and who they’re growing to be.

In this bi-monthly fiction podcast, intersectional storyteller and comedian Jo Güstin weaves fantastic tales and legends from the land of Queeristan. Jo Güstin’s multimedia work has been featured by the Paris International Lesbian & Feminist Film Festival and at the Paris Lesbian Book Fair (Salon du Livre Lesbien). Jo Güstin is also the founder of dearnge society, a creative production company for those who don’t fit into this world.

  • El Estornudo (“The Sneeze”)––Havana, Cuba––Spanish

A sound-rich narrative podcast in Spanish that catches the common time of ordinary people contrasted with the clock of power.

  • FAXINA––Boston, Massachusetts and Brasília, Brazil––Portuguese

A Portuguese word signifying thorough cleaning, raising the rug to examine what lies beneath, FAXINA shares the ignored, forgotten, unheard, and first-person accounts of Brazilians and Portuguese-speaking immigrants who are domestic workers in the U.S.

  • Indomables (“Indomitable”)––Panama City, Panama––Spanish

Journalists Melissa Pinel and Leila Nilipour craft intimate stories of the human experience, revealing the intricacies of cultural, historical, and social issues while bringing us closer together.

  • K’nın Sesi (“Voice of K”)––Istanbul, Turkey––Turkish

The letter “K” carries multiple meanings, referring to concepts such as Kadın (woman), Kuir (queer), Korona (corona), Karantina (quarantine), Kavga (struggle), and Keşif (discovery). Raising queer voices and women’s voices from Turkey, K’nın Sesi will feature empowering audio dramas and conversations reaching those who might feel isolated and underrepresented.

Featuring historical, hidden narratives of women leaders in Zambia who held prominent positions of power, pre-colonialism, Leading Ladies challenges existing ideas around women and leadership vital to Africa’s development. Leading Ladies is a podcast from the Women’s History Museum of Zambia.

“To be a man is not a day’s job,” the age-old proverb says, and the journey from ‘boyhood’ to ‘manhood’ is complex. Letters to Boys is a podcast that explores issues on manhood, diving into the workplace, relationships, marriage, and more.

Musician Corey Paul and entrepreneur JaMorcus Trayham grew up in a neighborhood with a 30% school drop-out rate, and didn’t start reading books until adulthood. Together, and with a mix of education and entertainment, Corey and JaMorcus break down popular financial books in a way that resonates with people of color and marginalized communities while also sharing their own life experiences.

  • On Spec––Istanbul, Turkey––English

Reported from different corners of the world, On Spec features documentaries from independent journalists about global issues through the lens of local communities.

Through experimentation and evocative sound, Pequeños Viajes Sensoriales visits fantastic settings that stimulate the senses and emotions, inspiring creativity and taking the power of imagination to the limit.

  • Prato Cheio (“Full Plate”)––São Paulo, Brazil––Portuguese

Based on rigorous research and investigation, Prato Cheio promotes a democratic debate on a fundamental issue of the 21st century: food. A team of journalists with a diverse background – ranging from sustainability to human rights – examines all things food politics with a systemic approach to the topic, aiming to spark interesting conversations among those who listen to the show. Prato Cheio is a project of O Joio e O Trigo, the only journalistic project in Brazil exclusively dedicated to investigations regarding food.

Self Evident presents reported stories, audio documentaries, and conversations from Asian diaspora communities across the United States, to reveal and challenge the narratives that shape our lives.

An unfiltered audio fiction podcast for teens and young adults and wrapped in Black culture, Tales of the Text features stories of relationships, friendships, peer pressure, drugs, sex, secret societies, drama, secrets, and plot twists.

  • The Food Griot Chronicles––Brooklyn, New York––English
    A special series from The Food Griot & Market Road Films delving into American food and drink history, The Food Griot Chronicles delivers history from the perspective of those responsible for our foodways more than any other: Black culinary architects whose legacies carry through today.

  • Tres Cuentos (“Three Stories”)––Georgia and Texas––English and Spanish

With episodes in both Spanish and English, Tres Cuentos is dedicated to Latin America’s literary, historical, and traditional narratives while bringing to life literature and reflecting on it from various cultural and historical perspectives.

An audio drama about love, revenge, prejudice, and the things we fear most, Valle de Cielo Gris is a cosmic horror fantasy satirizing the absurdities of the human condition and our everyday monsters, while also shining a light on our need for hope and humor in our darkest of times.

Almost two million Vietnamese risked their lives to flee oppression and hardship after the Vietnam War, in one of the largest mass exoduses in modern history. Escaping by boat, many were captured and brutally punished, many were denied asylum in neighboring countries, many died along the journey, and hundreds of thousands eventually resettled in western countries. This population of people are known as the ‘Vietnamese Boat People.’ These are their stories of hope, survival, and resilience. Vietnamese Boat People is both a podcast and nonprofit organization of the same name with a mission to preserve and carry forward stories across generations.


Brad Hill