ByMidwest Center for Investigative Reporting Staff |
If you live in central Illinois, you may have spotted a small, dome-like device that resembles a flying saucer along a fence or in a neighbor’s backyard. Those devices are air samplers, specifically designed to measure pesticide drift. We’ve placed four samplers in agricultural communities to learn more about what chemicals, if any, might be drifting from corn and soybean fields onto nearby backyards, school grounds and parks as spraying gets underway this spring. We have also placed a sampler near our office in Champaign to serve as a control. Below, you will find more information about how this project will contribute to our reporting, how the community helped determine the locations of the samplers and exactly how the samplers work.
This story was inspired by a question submitted at a Listening Post the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting held in August. Stuart Levy in Urbana, Illinois, asked us what would be needed for row crop farmers to switch from corn and soybeans to “something more sustainable.” We dug into that question, which starts with the unlikely circumstances that turned the soybean into a multi-billion dollar industry, and what this history might reveal about the future of U.S. agriculture.
We are excited to announce a matching gift opportunity from News Match, a national campaign by independent foundations to encourage grassroots support for nonprofit news organizations like ours. Starting right now—and until the end of the year—News Match will match dollar for dollar any donation we receive - up to $1,000 per donation.
Illinois Humanities and the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting jointly announced today that Anna Casey has been named their first-ever Audience Engagement Fellow. During the 12-month term of her Fellowship, Casey will work full-time with the Center, a Champaign-based nonprofit investigative newsroom focused on agriculture and agribusiness, to build dialogue with the community members and involve them more deeply in the reporting process.
The Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting has been selected by the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute as one of six fellowship projects for 2017-2018 that will focus on filter bubbles, bite-size training and business-side analytics.
We are seeking applicants for the Illinois Humanities Engagement Fellowship at the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting in Champaign, Ill. In collaboration with MCIR and Illinois Humanities staff, the Engagement Fellow will design, develop and implement an engagement program to be substantially integrated into MCIR’s reporting and editorial workflow. Deadline to apply is April 10.
Today is the last day to triple your donation to the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting. As part of a 30-day #newsmatch challenge from the Knight Foundation, every dollar you donate through today will be matched. And thanks to the generosity of the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation, your dollar is matched again.
Now more than ever, we need hard-working journalists to produce fact-based journalism that supports our democracy by telling the truth and holding powerful institutions accountable. Your tax-deductible donation to the Midwest Center will be tripled and fund our reporters and center as they do the stories that matter.
The Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting is one of nearly 60 nonprofit news organizations selected by the Knight Foundation to participate in the Knight News Match challenge. Knight Foundation has created a $1.5 million fund for a group of nonprofit journalism news outlets to support their work and help them expand their base of individual donors. Please consider a $10, $25 or even $50 gift. Donate now!From Dec. 19, 2016 to Jan.