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9 reasons to support local your local nonprofit news: Reason 6

Today’s article is about Reason 6 in our 9 Reasons to support BenitoLink series. This series is our way of gently reminding you, our readers, why BenitoLink is worth supporting. This is a great time to donate to BenitoLink because your donation can be doubled up to $40,000 until Dec. 31.

Today, instead of telling you why, we’re going to turn the tables and share with you a few comments we’ve received from our readers about why they read and contribute to BenitoLink. 

The last two years have been extraordinary. COVID-19 doubled our readership abruptly, as residents required important information about staying safe and everyday matters like where to get toilet paper. Since then we have learned more and more about what you need and how to serve our community better. 

But beyond emergency situations, BenitoLink continues to play an important role in keeping the community connected with local events as well as publishing news articles and commentaries on current issues. Popping into San Benito Bene in downtown Hollister today for a little gift, I heard from retired nurse and lifelong Hollister resident, Nan Oliveira.

Nan Oliveira doing a bit of quick shopping in Hollister. Photo by Leslie David.
Nan Oliveira doing a bit of quick shopping in Hollister. Photo by Leslie David.

Oliveira said BenitoLink is part of her daily routine. “I read it with my coffee every morning. I catch up on everything, the news and the obituaries. I love BenitoLink!” 

Hollister resident and long-time donor Kathy Kessler first got involved in BenitoLink by signing up for our weekly newsletter. “I joined BenitoLink as soon as I saw the first post on social media a few years ago. I believe they are the only online news service to offer bipartisan, informative, quality content to its readers,” Kessler said. 

Kathy Kessler working on a Women's Club project. Photo by Leila Sadeghian
Kathy Kessler working on a Women’s Club project. Photo by Leila Sadeghian

Kessler is involved in her community and local nonprofits. It wasn’t long before she was willing to donate and thus demonstrate her appreciation for BenitoLink, San Benito’s own nonprofit news outlet.

“BenitoLink is a community news service that goes beyond the mainstream news,” Kessler said. “I’ve particularly enjoyed the special series on geology by Jim Ostdick and Searching the Sky by David Baumgartner. It is not just news. It is about the people who live, work, and play in San Benito.”

Walking around downtown Hollister and stopping in at local businesses, people often comment to the reporting team about BenitoLink and the role it plays in their day to day lives. This week, in line for lunch at Heavenly Bakery, I ran into local IRS-certified tax preparer, Dan Recht. He asked about how the local news business is going and I commented on how very busy it has been since COVID-19 arrived. “Thank God you’re here!” Recht said.

It takes community effort to keep a news operation thriving in our county. We hope that everyone who is able will make an effort to support their local newsroom. 

BenitoLink is not just online news, it builds community and helps develop engagement in our local political process through events and election forums. Journalism is hard work. It requires careful research on important topics and attendance at many meetings and events so that we can report back to you. Dedicated reporters stay on the story and help you follow the changes and challenges our county faces. 

One of our dedicated readers and regular commenters, former Hollister City Council member Carol Lenoir sent this note after we published why to support BenitoLink Reason 1, “Persistent Journalism has an Impact.” 

“In response to Leslie David’s article, ‘Persistent Journalism has an Impact’, it’s the best 10 bucks a month I spend,” said Hollister resident Lenoir. She then added and we appreciate her request, “Please consider a monthly donation to support local news.”    



Leslie David

Leslie David is a Bay Area independent reporter/producer and is a BenitoLink founding board member. She has produced for radio, television, newspaper and magazines in both California and Wyoming. She was with KRON-TV News in San Francisco as camera-woman, editor and field producer, where she won the Commonwealth Club's Thomas Storke Award with Linda Yee for their series on the Aids Epidemic. She started as a small market news reporter shooting her own 16mm film at KEYT-TV Santa Barbara. Leslie lives on a ranch with her family in San Benito County.