Help us get the good news out there

The new year is starting to pick up momentum and my diary is filling up with school and community events, to my great joy.

The first and last couple of weeks of every year are some of the toughest for journalists as most people are not at the office and events calendars are blank. It’s then that journalists need to call on all their contacts and creative juices to write or source enough stories to make the newspaper a worthwhile read.

While I was phoning around, emailing and googling to fill the first issue of the year, I started thinking about the importance of community involvement. When people hear that I’m a journalist, one of their first questions is, “But how do you get the news?”

This is exactly where community involvement comes in. Without me attending meetings, social, club and sports events and community members telling me about problems, interesting happenings or achievements, I wouldn’t have anything to write about.

I love it when the schools and various sports and community clubs send me their calendars as these enable me to plan my days and ensure I’m there to capture all the fun on camera.

Since I live just outside of town, in a quieter part of the White River community, I’m not always the first to know about problems in town. The WhatsApps or SMSs of readers that let me know about sewage, water or electricity problems or other municipality or social issues are therefore invaluable to keeping the community in the loop.

After living in White River for over two years, I’ve fallen in love with the town and its wonderful, quirky population and look forward to meeting even more people, clubs and organisations and to get involved in dozens more community projects. I therefore invite all clubs, organisations or events planners to send me their events so we can start up an events section in both the print edition of White River Post and on the website.

Community members help me tell the story of White River and its people and anyone with an interesting story to tell, an opinion contained in a letter, an amazing photo or family recipe they’d like to share are welcome to phone, email or WhatsApp me.

If you’re a writer or just like sharing your opinion, we’re looking for community members that would like to send us regular blog entries (once or twice a month) for our website. Interested people can email their contact details, information on what they’d like to write about and how frequently they can contribute. A screening process will follow to determine whether the content is relevant and appropriate for readers.

To send me information, photos or calendars, contact me on 072-578-8742 or send an email to [email protected]

Retha Nel

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Happy centenary!