A Fresh Start for Newham
The Covid-19 crisis has brought out the best in the Borough of Newham, unleashing the inner helper in many residents and revealing an abundance of solidarity, resilience, and humanity.
This once-in-a-lifetime health emergency also revealed a gaping hole in the life of the community – the lack of a comprehensive Borough-wide news and public information service.
Newham Voices has been created to fill the news and communications gap – both online and in print – with stories created by local volunteer contributors, overseen by a dedicated, experienced editorial team.
Newham Voices will be an independent, community-led news service, keeping people connected and providing easy access to reliable and trustworthy information. And not just at times of emergency.
This report provides background information and sets out in some detail the proposal to launch this news service in 2021.
Newham Voices will be a monthly community newspaper, supported by an online news portal. There will also be a community journalism training programme.
Newham Voices will not be politically led or culturally narrow, but will embrace the kaleidoscope of views and experience that make Newham one of the most exciting and challenging places in Britain.
The aim is to create a safe, secure and reliable information space for Newham, reflecting the diversity and vibrant character of our community.
This report explains how that will be done. It traces the changes in communications and access to neighbourhood news that have diminished the scope for local democracy and participation in community life. It sets out a strategy for development of a new local resource that will raise community awareness and enhance cohesion.
Newham Voices will be managed professionally according to a sustainable business plan; it will have content that meets the highest standards of journalism; and it will be accountable to the community it serves. Above all, it aims to be part of a movement to launch a fresh start for the people of Newham.