Today I was talking to someone I work with and she told me a neat story about her daughter. She said she was going to visit her on the Gulf Coast, so I asked if she had been affected by Katrina or did she move down later? She said that her daughter had been a reporter for a major newspaper (she gave me specifics, but I thought I would leave everything vague) and was sent to cover the aftermath of Katrina. She really loved the place and now she lives there. But the neat part is how it all came about.
While she was covering the story she was talking to a lot of different people, people who needed services, stores that were open, people who needed money and had services to offer, and so forth. So she wrote up a list of local contacts and was giving them out to people. She gave out hundreds of copies. So the next week she added to the list and handed the longer two-page list out. There wasn’t a local newspaper so it was a good way of getting information out. Again, she wound up making hundreds of copies and giving them all out in no time. And it led to more people giving her names, so she started adding some stories and pretty soon people wanted to pay to advertise. It became more of a newsletter, then a long newsletter, and now it is printed on newsprint, and it has become the local newspaper. She found a photographer so she could add pictures and someone with some newspaper experience to help out. It’s about 20 pages long. So she doesn’t work at the big paper anymore.
This lady was so proud of her daughter. She said that the last time she went to visit they went to a “restaurant.” She said it wasn’t really a restaurant, it was the slab of the restaurant that used to be there and the owners had brought in a trailer to cook out of and set up tables and lights on the slab. While they were sitting there her daughter pointed out that people at every table were reading her newspaper.