Meet Tallahassee Democrat, a recipient of this year’s Facebook Journalism Project Community Network Grant, and learn more about their funded project.
For more information about the FJP Community Network, visit: https://facebookjournalismproject.com/programs/community-network/
The Funded Project:
Solicit, train and work with community correspondents to continue coverage of rural counties impacted by Hurricane Michael in 2018. Following community meetings and trainings, our community contributors will be paired with newsroom mentors and editors. Check out the Tallahassee Democrat’s interactive tour of the affected areas from Hurricane Michael.
In Their Own Words:
Though Tallahassee is a substantial city, we are surrounded by rural counties that get little or no news coverage. This need was sharply emphasized by 2018’s Hurricane Michael, which severely damaged many of these areas, destroying the homes and livelihoods of entire towns.
Those people and places had no way to communicate with the outside world, no way to tell their stories and convey their desperate needs.
We stepped in to fill the gap, not parachuting in for a single “hurricane devastation” story, but visiting dozens of towns and publishing dozens of datelined stories focusing on the people and places usually forgotten.
We have continued this coverage when we could, and have plans for the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Michael (see below), but we do not have the resources to sustain coverage of the large rural area with our staff alone.
We must locate, solicit, train, and work with community correspondents in as many of these towns as we can.
We hope to expand our regular coverage to include many of these areas, at the same time expanding our readership and digital subscription base to include people who will then have more reason to read that coverage.