When Disasters Hit Home: How Local Journalism Can Build Resilient Communities During Emergencies

Wednesday, August 14 | 2:00-3:00 PM EST

Have you experienced a disaster in your community? If you haven’t yet, you will — and local journalism can play a crucial role in helping communities prepare, respond, and recover during emergencies. In rural areas, it is local media who are the first responders of information and are best positioned to get accurate information to those who need it most. Local media is in a unique position to reach underserved residents, verify quickly changing conditions, and provide accountability through disaster recovery. Like many other response organizations, local and rural newsrooms can be strained by few resources, and rely on collaboration to be most effective.

This session will be led by Kate B. Maxwell and Maria Arce, two Reynold’s Journalism Institute Innovation Fellows and community news leaders experienced with covering emergencies and centering community information needs before, during, and after disasters. They will share cost-effective strategies, including emergency tools for newsrooms, how to take advantage of ham radio communications when all other means fail, and means of collaboration between media and community groups. Resources will be available in both English and Spanish.

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