Old flags, plastic bags, micro pantries, and more — ways we are making a difference together

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making a difference

by Melanie Jongsma, Publisher

LANSING, Ill. (April 28, 2021) – Not everything that happens in Lansing is quite as dramatic as a spike in property tax assessments or tense contract negotiations in our local schools. So a lot of the news we report in our daily email is “smaller” stories.

But those small stories are important too. In fact, maybe the smaller stories are what make more of a difference in your day-to-day life in this community.

Making a difference — examples

For example, after we published information about where to dispose of worn-out flags, a neighbor thanked me. “I have three old flags that I didn’t know what to do with,” she said. “Now I’m going to swing by Village Hall and put them in the depository there.” That story made a difference to her. The depository had been there for years, but she didn’t know about it until she read our article.

Another example: I received a surprising number of comments from readers after we published an article titled Recycling 101. “That was so helpful!” people told me. “I didn’t know we aren’t supposed to put plastic bags in the recycling bin! I’m going to have to figure out a different routine now.” Homewood Disposal handles our village’s recycling program, and they provide instructions on their website and in their marketing materials. But it was our news article that nudged people to change their actions.

Similarly, when we let you know about the Lansing Historical Society’s presentation on the Underground Railroad (pre-pandemic), people attended in record numbers. Local history teacher Jeff White brought some of his students. District 215 School Board member Rita Oberman asked about sharing the presentation within our schools. Dionne Macon, of Lynwood, was fascinated by the individual stories of freedom seekers who passed through Illinois. Our reporting made a difference in people’s decision to attend, their attendance made a difference to the Lansing Historical Society (they were amazed!), and the presentation made a difference in how people understand our community.

This works with social events too: The summer of 2019 was Lansing’s first experience with the Fox Pointe entertainment venue. The Lansing Journal reported on the anticipated opening, provided maps of the available parking, published the entertainment schedule, and explained what visitors could expect in terms of tickets, concessions, mosquitos, and bathrooms. Then we reported on each performance, event, meeting, fest, and party, and we provided a wrap-up at the end of the year. Thousands of people from Lansing and surrounding communities attended events, patronized our businesses, enjoyed a variety of entertainment, and picked up their litter after each concert. Fox Pointe has the potential to make a difference in our community, and The Lansing Journal helps keep the region informed about it.

This local newspaper even makes a difference in how people in our community help each other. Throughout the pandemic year we posted stories about food drives and micro pantries and ways our community was working together to get through tough times. Not only did those articles help families who needed food, they also prompted people like you to help keep the micro pantries stocked, to add more micro pantries, and to expand offerings by creating a pantry mall. It was amazing to see our community come together in new ways.

These are just a few examples of how people like you make a difference in our community, simply because of information The Lansing Journal provides.

Convenience, reach, results

Without The Lansing Journal you’d have to visit the Village website, the library website, the Lansing Historical Society Facebook page, the Fox Pointe website, and several different Facebook groups to learn about the examples I’m sharing here. The Lansing Journal gathers information, expands on it, and delivers it right to your email inbox (if you’re a subscriber, which you should be!).

Without The Lansing Journal local organizations have to do their own publishing and promoting. While they might effectively reach their own Facebook followers, their own church members, or their own mailing lists, The Lansing Journal helps them reach new people, people who are outside of their own networks. Through our affordable local advertising as well as our balanced local reporting, these community organizations can expand their reach to tens of thousands of people each month.

Without The Lansing Journal micro pantries might remain unstocked and unused. Homewood Disposal might waste hundreds of hours untangling plastic bags from its recycling machinery. Lansing residents might head to Chicago or Northwest Indiana for evening entertainment options. Small businesses might spend thousands of dollars to advertise to people who don’t shop here.

Are those “small” daily decisions important? I think they are.

Whether it’s letting you know our local businesses are in trouble or letting you know you need to bring a lawn chair to Fox Pointe, local information is important.

Supporting our reporting

We can do this kind of journalism only when readers like you are part of the equation. That’s why I occasionally ask you to financially support the work we do — work that is easy to take for granted.

In order to keep reporting, we need you to keep supporting!

We’d love to have you as a monthly supporter — those contributions help us plan each month’s budget. But if you aren’t able to make that kind of sustained commitment, a one-time gift is helpful too. We use a giving portal called Pico to provide a secure giving experience for our supporters. Clicking this Pico link will open a page where you can start the process:

We are grateful to be part of a community that loves staying informed, staying connected, and making a difference.

Let’s keep making a difference together!

making a difference

Prefer to mail a check? That helps too! Here’s our mailing information:
The Lansing Journal
PO Box 742
Lansing IL 60438