Solutions in NYC and Beyond

How the NYCity News Service is spotlighting community work

 

Schools have been forever changed by the pandemic, as have the students and the educators inside them.

Food insecurity and unemployment exacerbated a housing crisis that had reached a a feverish height.

And beloved neighborhood businesses that had been reliable community presences for decades have abruptly close their doors.

For many journalists, covering the pandemic changed dramatically, too. The focus shifted from not only exposing these problems but also to shining a light on how communities are responding to them. It’s a tenet of a reporting practice called solutions journalism.

Throughout the pandemic, we’ve seen so much we’ve never seen before. As the cultural landscape continues to shift, inequities are exposed and magnified. Many are freshly visible symptoms of old problems.

As journalism pivots and seeks new ways to address heightened systemic shortcomings, so, too, have many communities risen to these challenges and stepped in to fill gaps. Mutual aid, fresh thinking, collaboration and empathy have built some pretty creative solutions across New York.

Centering the search for solutions in our journalism—unpacking how and why specific approaches work and where else they may be of benefit—brings a host of new possibilities to the work we do. The practice of lifting voices, offering resources and celebrating solutions that have the potential to shift patterns is powerful because it is empowering.

The multimedia stories that appear on this site are a celebration of New York and New Yorkers who step up when it’s time to step in. They speak to the struggles New Yorkers have faced this year, report out the systemic roots of the pandemic’s inequitable impact, and offer a glimpse at ways forward for communities.

Quality of Life

New Yorkers looking to solve local problems are making a big impact. Reporters Anthony Medina, Dimitri Fautsch and Juanita Ramos chronicle the individuals and groups improving the health, well-being and environments of their neighborhoods. Read more >

Education

New methods of teaching were developed and tested in classrooms across the city and state. Reporter Liz Richards catalogs the work of educators striving to solve persistent learning challenges in schools. Read more >

Cooperatives

Businesses have been pushed to—and over—the edge during the pandemic. Some smaller stores and service providers found ways to sustain what they provide. Reporters Sarah Molano and Dimitri Fautsch document how cooperatives create solutions. Read more >

Social Services

Mental-health challenges and food insecurity in underserved communities are being met head-on by community activism.  Reporters Juanita Ramos, Milette Millington and Pablo Alvarez spotlight organizations connecting to those in need. Read more >

CREDITS

Reporters

Pablo Alvarez

Dimitri Fautsch

Anthony Medina

Milette Millington

Sarah Molano

Juanita Ramos

Liz Richards

Editorial Team

Sarah Molano

Juanita Ramos

Liz Richards

 

Website Layout/Design Team

Pablo Alvarez

Dimitri Fautsch

Anthony Medina

Milette Millington

Faculty Advisers

Solutions NYC was produced by students at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY‘s NYCity News Service under the guidance of Wil Cruz, John Mancini and Christine McKenna.