Today, May 3, is World Press Freedom Day. And PublicSource is thrilled to be included in a special campaign by The New York Times in observance of the day raising awareness of the importance of an independent press.

The campaign is encouraging readers to find a local news organization they trust, and to support it through a subscription or donation.

The COVID-19 pandemic has magnified just how essential local journalism is in these physically isolating times. It’s connecting people to resources, facts and a sense of community.

“As the coronavirus pandemic presents unprecedented reporting challenges and growing financial pressures, it’s also underscored the value of great journalism,” as A.G. Sulzberger, publisher of The New York Times said in his announcement of the campaign, which launched Friday, May 1.

The campaign sends readers to a database of local news organizations sourced from the member lists of The Institute for Nonprofit News, Local Independent Online News Publishers, and the News Media Alliance.

At PublicSource, we are grateful to everyone who has been supporting us during this time. Our readers’ support translates directly into insightful local journalism that takes the longview and personal stories you won’t see anywhere else: from how local institutions are functioning during this crisis to how your neighbors are coping and what challenges are awaiting ahead. Your support helps PublicSource uncover stories that matter, explain what’s wrong and why.

“Living and working through a pandemic is new for all of us, but reporting during times of distress and great public need and asking tough questions of officials on your behalf is something we are equipped to take on and want to keep doing for you,” said Halle Stockton, managing editor of PublicSource.

We trust that our readers know more than we do. And we are grateful for your tips and feedback and for reading. We wouldn’t be able to do this without you.

Our team hopes that you will continue to rely on us for information and in-depth explanations, for powerful narratives and fact-checked data to make sense of what’s happening in the Pittsburgh region during the COVID-19 pandemic.

We understand the gravity of this moment.

That’s why we have been working diligently to deliver value to our readers and community at-large.

So, on this World Press Freedom Day, we are asking you — if you are able — to support our small but mighty newsroom committed to serving Pittsburgh and our region long-term.

Please consider donating to PublicSource!

This fact-based local reporting drives impact and creates change. Help power that impact.

James Baldwin wrote, “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” PublicSource exists to help the Pittsburgh region face its realities and create opportunities for change. When we shine a light on inequity in our region, like the “completely unacceptable” conditions in low-income housing in McKeesport, things change. When we ask questions about policymakers’ decisions, like how Allegheny County is handling COVID-19 safety for its employees, things change. When we push for transparency on issues that affect the public, like in the use of facial recognition software by Pittsburgh police, things change.

It takes a lot of time, skill and resources to produce journalism like this. Our stories are always made available for free so that they can benefit the most people, regardless of ability to pay. But as an independent, nonprofit newsroom, we count on donations from our readers to support this crucial work. Can you make a contribution of any amount (or better yet, set up a recurring monthly gift) to help ensure we can continue to report on what matters and tell stories for a better Pittsburgh?

Mila Sanina is the executive director of PublicSource. Previously, she was the deputy managing editor at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, where she led innovation in storytelling and integration of print and...