The Funded Project:
Pilot an obituary outreach program to tell the stories of Long Island residents currently underrepresented in media coverage.
In Their Own Words:
Obituaries are an important way newspapers tell the stories of their communities. They’re often about ordinary people who have had interesting and even incredible things happen in their lives. They’re also among our top-performing content online, and an important driver of subscriptions.
Unfortunately, minority communities are severely underrepresented in our coverage.
Our plan is to go into diverse communities and ask people to tell us stories about recently deceased family or friends. We’ll visit libraries, houses of worship, fire stations (LI has 175 volunteer departments) and more, making a special effort to reach out to the younger generation. We’ll then write the stories, or hire community freelancers and also train people to tell their own stories. In the best case scenario, we’ll be able to create an online community where people share stories about their loved ones on Newsday.com, Facebook, Instagram, etc. We’ll also partner with other local organizations on the project.
Finally, we’ll look into hosting memorial events in communities, celebrating the lives of Long Islanders who have passed away. These events may include a multimedia presentation, listening posts to gather even more stories, appropriate local vendors and resources.