On November 27 tens of thousands of charities working on issues ranging from healthcare to housing, education to the environment, civil rights to criminal justice, will take part in Giving Tuesday, a global day of giving. No matter what issue you care about you’ll be able to find and support nonprofits working to make a difference. And for every one of these issues there are also nonprofit news organizations whose reporting is helping to reveal injustice, seek accountability, and shine a spotlight on solutions. That’s why this Giving Tuesday we are also celebrating #GivingNewsDay, in recognition of the vital role that journalism plays in our communities and our democracy.
#GivingNewsDay is part of NewsMatch, a national call to action to support journalism that strengthens democracy. From November 1 to December 31 NewsMatch will double donations to 155 nonprofit newsrooms all across the United States.
NewsMatch launched #GivingNewsDay alongside Giving Tuesday to highlight the ways local news and investigative reporting contribute to healthy and just communities. Over the last decade nonprofit journalism has become a profoundly important part of America’s media landscape. Like so many nonprofit organizations, these news outlets are committed to serving their communities and the public good, and depend on donations to keep their doors open.
Research has shown that erosions in local news lead to lower voting rates, pose challenges to community health, increase the risk of pollution, and lead to more government waste. Nonprofit newsrooms are dedicated to in-depth reporting on issues and places that are too often overlooked. That reporting sparks meaningful change in people’s lives.
- If you care about climate change and the environment, consider supporting InsideClimate News, Grist and the Energy News Network or The Lens, whose reporting uncovered a scheme to place paid actors at New Orleans City Council meetings to give the impression of community support for a power plant, leading to a $5 million fine for the utility company.
- If you care about poverty, consider supporting the Economic Hardship Reporting Project or New Food Economy, whose reporting on Amazon being a top employer of food stamp participants led to the company raising its minimum wage to $15 an hour, a change that impacted hundreds of thousands of employees.
- If you care about education, consider supporting Chalkbeat, EdSource, the Hechinger Report or PublicSource, whose reporting on the school funding crisis in Pennsylvania led to the involvement of the state secretary of education and visits by education experts to several of the schools profiled.
- If you care about #MeToo, consider supporting MinnPost, Current, Grist and TucsonSentinel.com, all of whom reported impactful stories this year on sexual misconduct by men in positions of power and the consequences of those actions.
- If you care about immigration consider supporting Texas Tribune, Texas Observer, Tucson Sentinel and ProPublica whose reporting on family separation and immigrant children in custody was critically important in 2018.
- If you care about voting and elections, consider supporting Open Secrets, fact-checking at Politifact or The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism and Bridge Magazine who published critical reporting on gerrymandering and government transparency in the lead-up to the 2018 midterm elections.
- If you care about criminal justice consider supporting the Marshall Project, Solitary Watch or Injustice Watch, whose detailed voter guide led to a Cook County judge losing reelection for the first time in almost 30 years.
- If you care about gun violence consider supporting The Trace, Mother Jones, or the Better Government Association, whose investigation with WBEZ of police shootings led to a new law being passed requiring an internal review of all such incidents.
- If you care about healthcare consider supporting California Health Report, Georgia Health News or North Carolina Health News, whose reporting on problems with a 3-year-old law to help provide treatment for children with autism prompted action from state officials.
These are just a few of the 155 nonprofit newsrooms participating in NewsMatch and #GivingNewsDay. At NewsMatch.org you can search by topic or location and find vetted, trustworthy nonprofit newsrooms to follow and support. You can even add multiple newsrooms to your donation cart and support them all with one donation. Best of all, every dollar you give to nonprofit journalism will be doubled by NewsMatch.
This Giving Tuesday, if you are giving to your local food bank, give to the journalists who are covering hunger and homelessness too. If you are giving to conservation organizations, support environmental reporting too. Progress on so many issues depends on the coverage those issues receive and we have to ensure that we have a strong watchdog press that serves the public. When you donate to nonprofit news you are helping shine a spotlight on the issues you care about and you are giving to journalists who answer to you.
Help turn Giving Tuesday into #GivingNewsDay. When you support the causes you care about, don’t forget to give to the journalists who cover them. Get started at NewsMatch.org and every donation you make will be doubled.
Josh Stearns is Director of the Public Square Program at the Democracy Fund, a bipartisan foundation working to ensure that our political system is able to withstand new challenges and deliver on its promise to the American people.