Last week The Bedford Citizen proudly announced our recent acceptance as a member of the Institute of Non-Profit News (INN), a network of more than 230 nonprofit newsrooms producing journalism in the public interest. It was gratifying to have met INN’s rigorous standards for membership, including “consistent original reporting of high quality,” editorial independence, and a willingness to follow INN guidelines for ethics and transparency.
But we don’t want the excited tooting of our own horn to overwhelm the voices and actions of the most important people who enable the work of The Bedford Citizen. Ta da! That would be you! You, as a loyal reader; you, as a contributing writer or photographer; you, as a person providing feedback to us directly or as a Letter to the Editor; you, as a business sponsor; and most importantly, you as an individual donor.
Without you, stories go untold.
Think about it: if The Bedford Citizen ceased to publish (now available free and online), how would you know quickly and easily about what went on at the Selectmen’s meeting or actions taken by the School Committee? Where would you go to find out the details on a public hearing scheduled by the Planning Board or Conservation Commission? How would you go about preparing for Town Meeting or learning about candidates running for local office? Curious about how the Bedford High teams are faring or interested in seeing action photos of local kids on the field? Maybe you’ve just arrived in Bedford and are trying to figure out where the “action” is or how to enroll your family into a Recreation Department program.
This is what The Bedford Citizen is all about – informing our readers so that they can fully participate in all that Bedford has to offer. Everything from local government to local cultural events. These are the things that make a town a community: raising our visibility to one another, building awareness and knowledge of the facts, developing consensus, planning, and making decisions together — Democracy in action at the home-town level.
We believe reliable local journalism is more critical than ever. With your support and feedback, The Bedford Citizen will continue to be a key resource for our town. Our mission remains to support informed citizen participation, civil discourse, and an engaged community.