Donate from now until May 4

Spring brings to Rappahannock blossoming flowers and seasonal smells, farmers’ markets, hikers and bikers … and Give Local Piedmont!

For eight years, the Northern Piedmont Community Foundation has sponsored this online fundraising campaign, raising millions of dollars for the great nonprofit organizations serving our region.

Support for Foothills through Give Local Piedmont enables our explanatory reporting in the Rappahannock News, such as this week’s conclusion to the “Behind the Badge” series and a two-pronged, in-depth look at financing our public schools.

Please consider giving to Foothills during Give Local Piedmont on Tuesday, May 4, or at any time until then. All donors to Foothills will automatically be signed up for a daily text from the staff of the Rapp News.

Thank you for supporting Foothills!

COVID’s Hidden Toll

After a year of covering the dramatic impacts of coronavirus on the economy, education, and government, Foothills this month turned its lense on the pernicious mental health consequences of the pandemic.

COVID-19’s Hidden Toll” is an occasional series appearing in the Rappahannock News. The first installment, “Can kids bounce back?” by Randy Rieland, explored how, while children are less susceptible to Covid, their mental well-being has nonetheless been challenged by months of social isolation and academic unpredictability.

The story included a list of useful steps that parents can take to help their children, as well a survey of local informational resources available to the public.

Next to come in the series are articles on substance abuse in the pandemic and impacts of Covid on the elderly.  Keep your eye out for this reporting in the News!

The promise of news nonprofits like Foothills

We believe strongly in the innovative business model of Foothills:  funding local journalism through community support, rather than a reliance on traditional newspaper subscriptions and advertising.

In fact, our brand of nonprofit community news may well reflect the future of American journalism.  That’s the finding of a survey of 1,400 members of the news media conducted by the Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications at Northwestern University.

“Asked which news business model holds the most promising path forward, 26.8% chose conversion from commercial to nonprofit status (like Foothills) while 24.8% cited a shift to reliance on reader revenue such as subscriptions, and just 7.1% picked growing advertising revenue,” Medill reported. (The option that drew the most support — 36.4% — was “all of the above.”)

For sharing this important research — and for encouraging Foothills and our in-depth, independent, and community supported journalism — we extend our thanks to Jim Iovino at NewStart, a local news ownership initiative at West Virginia University’s Reed College of Media.