Weave News to lead initiative providing North Country residents with training, support for journalism projects
Tuesday, August 7, 2018 - 8:57 am

CANTON -- Beginning this fall, Weave News will lead a new initiative designed to provide North Country residents with training and support for independent investigative journalism projects in their communities.

Created with initial funding from a St. Lawrence University Innovation Grant, the St. Lawrence Citizen Journalism Incubator (SLCJI) is a unique collaboration among four local media and citizen journalism organizations that bring a range of professional, citizen journalism, and citizen science experience to the project, Weave News, North Country Public Radio, The Hill News, and Nature Up North.

The project will begin with a one-day workshop at SLU Saturday, Sept. 22, featuring presentations and training sessions led by outside experts and members of the four local media organizations.

Participants will then spend several months carrying out their local journalism projects before presenting their work at a public symposium to be held in April.

“A healthy democracy requires citizens who are actively engaged in their communities, and we believe that local journalistic investigation is one of the best ways to promote this kind of democratic participation,” notes John Collins, founder and director of development for Weave News. “This project will help empower ordinary people by giving them the tools to bring to light issues that too often go underreported in their communities.”

The SLCJI organizers invite proposals from North Country residents for specific reporting projects that can be carried out in their home communities between September 2018 and April 2019. Local high school and college and university students are especially encouraged to apply, but the program is open to anyone aged high school and up. Previous journalistic experience is not a requirement. Applications may be submitted through the webform at http://www.weavenews.org/incubator. There is no fee for the program. Accepted participants can apply for funding for their work through the SLCJI’s small grants initiative.

In addition to providing support and mentoring to project participants, the SLCJI team will work with participants to identify opportunities for publishing their work via the Weave News, NCPR, The Hill News, and Nature Up North platforms and other regional outlets.

The organizing committee will begin reviewing proposals immediately and will continue until the final proposal deadline of Sept. 10.

For more information, visit www.weavenews.org/incubator.

About Weave News

Weave News was founded as a global community of citizen journalists committed to “weaving” a better world. The organization is directed by a team of seasoned staffers who assist contributors in sharing their work via investigative blogs, “Big Questions” videography, multimedia projects, and other initiatives. “We believe that the work of journalism is too important to be left solely to establishment and corporate media outlets whose content is increasingly driven by the interests of powerful elites,” a press release from the organization said. “The organization’s work is grounded in citizen journalism, the idea that any of us can act as journalists by gathering and sharing information about what is happening in the world.”

To learn more, visit WeaveNews.org and find us on Facebook and Twitter @WeaveNews.

About North Country Public Radio

Based in Canton, NCPR operates a network of 33 transmitters broadcasting to the entire Adirondack North Country, western Vermont and southeastern Ontario. The commercial-free format includes a wide variety of programs from National Public Radio including All Things Considered, Morning Edition, Fresh Air and more. NCPR's awards-winning news team can be heard weekdays at 8 a.m. with regional news broadcasts, features and interviews. The station also airs an eclectic mix of locally-hosted music programs.

About The Hill News

The Hill News is a weekly newspaper published by students of St. Lawrence University. It has a more than 100-year tradition of publishing news and opinion relevant to local students and the off-campus community. It is published during academic year and it is financed by Thelmo, St. Lawrence University’s student government. The newspaper is distributed free on campus. In the past three years, it won several awards in Better Newspaper Contest organized by the New York Press Association, including first prize for general excellence in the college newspaper category.

To learn more, visit TheHillNews.org and on Facebook.

About Nature Up North

Nature Up North is a community-based organization based at St. Lawrence University whose mission is to foster a deeper sense of appreciation for, and connection to, the North Country environment and in doing so to create a bioregionally literate community that is committed to protecting the wild things and wild places that define this place we call home.