• Rain Bennett

The Storytelling Lab - Ep11: Nonprofit Storytelling with Brittany Jennings

Updated: Apr 27, 2020

This week we welcome Brittany Jennings, Eastern North Carolina’s regional communication manager for the American Red Cross, to discuss nonprofit communication methods and recent hurricane Florence relief efforts!



In September of 2018, Hurricane Florence dumped 10 TRILLION gallons of water onto the coast of North Carolina in just five days.

My hometown and surrounding areas were completely flooded and we saw historic devastation.

I knew I had to do something, so I started a fund with friends from high school and raised $3000 in less than a week. I went down to Eastern NC to help any way I could and (of course) I brought a camera operator along to document everything that was going on.

Brittany at a Red Cross hurricane relief shelter.

Along the way, I reached out to the Red Cross and that’s when I met Brittany Jennings, the communication manager for the whole Eastern North Carolina region - 53 counties! She and I teamed up to tell the story of people bonding together in a time of need, and the beauty that can come out of destruction, if we allow it.

This week, Brittany and I discuss nonprofit communication methods and recent Hurricane Florence relief efforts. We talk “dos and don’ts” of storytelling in the midst of crisis, packaging stories for news outlets, and owning up to mistakes when they happen (because they always do).

Some of the highlights in this episode include:

  • social media strategy

  • how to create a good story (Brittany’s journalism background helps tremendously)

  • nonprofit struggles

  • creative uses of volunteer work

  • building relationships

  • Monitoring metrics for your media stories

  • how to get creative on “slow news” days

  • and most importantly, how to make sure all your communication choices serve your/ your company's ultimate mission.

Whether you work with a nonprofit or not, this episode is chock full of great advice!

Listen in to see how Brittany uses storytelling every day in her communication role!

Peace and Love,



And, if you’re in the Triangle area be sure to check out Red Cross’s Power of Miracles event:

“Miracle on the Hudson” 10th Anniversary Celebration

10 years ago, the "Miracle on the Hudson" captivated the hearts of Americans. Join the American Red Cross and Duke Health at the Carolina Theatre of Durham on January 17, 2019, for an evening of inspiration. Hear the gripping story told by co-pilot of US Airways Flight 1549 Jeff Skiles; Dave Sanderson, the last passenger off the aircraft; and Red Cross Division Disaster Executive Scott Graham. Proceeds support vital Red Cross programs and services in Central NC and the Triangle Area.

Follow Brittany on twitter @BritJennings

Follow Eastern NC Red Cross @RedCrossENC

For more storytelling tips and tricks:

Follow us on Twitter @storylabpodcast

Follow us on Instagram @sixsecondstories

Visit our website

Hosted by Rain Bennett (@rainbennett | Twitter) (

#podcast #thestorytellinglab #storytelling #valuesfirst

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