The Times has been named a recipient of a $5,000 grant to support COVID-19 reporting.
Eight newsrooms in Georgia are among 350 recipients of the grants from the
Facebook Journalism Project, Lenfest Institute for Journalism and Local Media Association.
The grant funding is being provided to help support local journalism and combat misinformation, according to a news release.
“Local journalists are providing critical information about how COVID-19 is affecting our community — information that would not be available if not for the newspaper,” Times Editor in Chief Shannon Casas said. “This grant will help The Times continue its work and offer a credible source of information to our subscribers and community.”
The Times created a Facebook group, Community against coronavirus, in late March to help provide another avenue for residents to obtain and share credible information about the pandemic.
“Misinformation about this pandemic has been rampant,” Casas said, noting that the newspaper has worked to inform the community about inaccurate information as well as provide it with accurate information.
“Readers should be wary of relying on information solely provided in screen grabs, which can be easily altered, and should work to determine the source of information they see on Facebook, which aggregates information but is not usually a source itself,” Casas said.
The Times’ journalists continue reporting angles of this developing story, including staying in touch with local health officials and government leaders as the pandemic evolves.
Other recipients in the state include the Americus Times-Recorder, The Atlanta Voice, Foundation for Public Broadcasting in Georgia, LaGrange Newsmedia LLC, MundoHispánico Digital Network, The Newnan Times-Herald and Southern Community Newspapers Inc.