Illustration by Carola Noguer

It’s easy to feel isolated these days. In fact, it’s compulsory.

And yet, at Mission Local, there’s a feeling that our community has never been stronger. For all the hardships in the past month, you, our readers, let us know how much this news site means to you: You contributed $12,098, the single biggest monthly amount we have raised outside of a formal fund drive. The money came in amounts ranging from $2 to $2,000, with a median donation of $25.

The organizations that support nonprofit news have been terrific, too. The Facebook Journalism Project Community Network promptly answered Mission Local’s early morning plea with a $5,000 grant. And with astonishing alacrity, Craig Newmark Philanthropies came through with a $10,000 grant.

We will use these funds to maintain and bolster our coverage, because a crisis is no time for cutbacks. In fact, our editorial team has been working in overdrive for weeks.

We’re reporting on the shockingly limited health data coming out of City Hall. We’re covering the efforts—successful and not—to support online classes for the district’s students. We’re keeping an eye out for the most vulnerable on our streets and shining a light on inequities.

The small business community, once so vibrant, is at a standstill. We’re doing our best to write pieces that will link owners to resources and to encourage everyone, wherever possible, to provide support by ordering takeout or taking classes online.

To meet the immigrant community’s desperate need for information, we’ve been translating more of our articles into Spanish, and we’ve launched a texting service to update Spanish-speakers quickly on local resources.

None of this would be possible without you, dear readers. But there  is another benefit of receiving these donations. Your rapid response makes us at Mission Local feel less isolated in all of this – and that is worth everything.

Thank you, from all of us.

Julian Mark, Loi Almeron, Lydia Chávez and Joe Eskenazi Illustration by Molly Oleson.

See more Upstart columns here.

Lydia Chávez

I’ve been a Mission resident since 1998 and a professor emeritus at Berkeley’s J-school since 2019 when I retired. I got my start in newspapers at the Albuquerque Tribune in the city where I was born...

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