We’re looking for a fundraiser – will you be our West Leeds Dispatch Valentine?

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Words: WLD Chair Anne Akers

It’s Valentine’s Day and while we’re not talking about romance, we at the West Leeds Dispatch would very much like to meet that special someone.

We’ve been going for some five-and-a-half years now and are getting more and more popular. Last week published a record 39 articles, which were seen by thousands of people. The 5,000 copies of the pilot print edition we launched last summer were snapped up within a couple of weeks.

And it’s all produced by volunteers, including a team of community reporters.

The trouble is, we’re becoming so popular, our volunteer editor is getting overwhelmed – and the costs of things like website hosting and bookkeeping are going up.

We know there are sponsors and local businesses who would like to support us, but we don’t have the capacity to engage with them and, more importantly, to negotiate deals that will cover our costs and pay our editor a small sum to recognise the amount of time he commits (it’s often full time hours on top of a full-time job that actually pays).

We’ll be honest, our Valentine will have to love us a lot, because we’re talking about you helping us on a volunteer basis, at least to begin with.

You’ll be a regular reader or maybe contributor, and you should definitely love community journalism and West Leeds, but more importantly you’ll have experience in fundraising for a very small community organisation such as ours.

In return, you’ll be part of something good for West Leeds, and join like-minded enthusiasts. You may even help raise enough so we can pay you (modestly), especially if we’re successful with funding bids we have in the pipeline.

There’s a lot more to tell, especially about our plans for the future and where you may fit in, so if you would like to be our Valentine and talk to us about what that might mean for you, drop us an email to news@westleedsdispatch.com and let’s talk.

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