The launching of a small newspaper – for the village, about the village, by the village - is a major way of networking within and beyond the community. By focusing on local news, and providing a regional “yellow pages”, newspapers serve to strengthen community cohesiveness and increase civic pride. By spreading information about current events, upcoming programs, and lauding local achievements, the newspaper builds a stronger community, empowers the readers and promotes greater involvement in community improvement.
A newspaper promotes literacy by providing up-to-date reading material that is accessible to all community members. Children are more motivated to read when reading material is present in their daily lives, and when that literature is pertinent and “real” – something that the adults they model after find important, rather than materials intended for children only. For adults, a newspaper can provide inspiration to learn to read for many of the same reasons.
Since a newspaper can be low-tech and low-cost, it is within the reach of most communities and does not exclude those that are just starting to build themselves up. It provides work experience for local students – as writers or distributors – and a venue for expression to all community members. It also functions as a highly positive public relations vehicle for the community; it attracts attention from many regions, showing others that this is a place that is helping itself grow, a place that could truly benefit from assistance because it has the pride and self-motivation to take what it receives, use it, and then share it with others.