Inspiration comes from many places, and as we contemplated just what we might say about the end of 2020 and the start of 2021, it was admittedly a struggle.
We have seen and experienced horrible events and losses in 2020, along with fear, isolation and sadness. That won’t magically change when the calendar says 2021. Only time will tell what is next.
So, how do we offer hope in a time of extraordinary darkness and uncertainty?
A reader who wrote to one of our Skagit Publishing newspapers offered that inspiration — by sharing good news. A teacher, she talked about what went well in her world this year. Despite the challenges of distance learning, there was learning. And that matters to her. She encouraged others to share their good news, as well.
So, we thank Patricia Hayes for that suggestion as we contribute to the sharing of good news.
Sharing news, good and bad, is what matters to us in the news business because we believe good, sourced information is essential for a healthy community.
It’s no secret that the news industry has struggled for years as it works to transform its business model to serve a changing readership, one that increasingly relies on mobile phones and word-of-mouth news shared on social media. Those challenges continue, but some good things happened this year, too.
For starters, we’ve been able to produce our news products through all of this. Some look different and scaled-down because, like most everyone, the pandemic affects what we’re able to do. But our dedicated staff, all of whom are essential workers in a crisis, have pushed forward with strength and grace.
Our journalists continue to cover the news, remotely and in person when necessary. They are committed to making sure our readers have access to information they need to know about what is happening here. Times like these show just how important that is.
Our advertising staff has taken extra strides to make sure that businesses in this community can connect with the public at a time when connection was truly needed. Buying local never mattered more. We appreciate the businesses that trust us to carry their message.
Our production staff has shown up every day to do the work required to produce print products. The circulation staff and the contract carriers who deliver the newspaper are still out there doing the job of making sure residents actually receive the information they need to know.
Our business staff makes sure our varied departments are able to do what we do.
You, our readers, are the biggest part of what is good in 2020. We’ve received notes of encouragement and even donations toward supporting community journalism. We appreciate you, more than you know.
We believe well-sourced information is as basic a need as oxygen for democracy. Our goal is to provide that for our little corner of the world. You are what makes that possible. We can’t be all things to all people, but we appreciate that you are reading this now.
We would love for you to follow Patricia Hayes’ suggestion and share your good, preferably nonpolitical, news — with friends, neighbors and with us. And let’s work together toward healing in 2021.