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Service to America Week

Every day of the year, broadcasters play a unique and critical
role in their communities and nationwide.
Read their stories below, and see more stories on:

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Beasley Best Community of Caring

Recognizing the community service of its local stations, Beasley Media Group (BMG) realized that, working together, they could make an even greater impact and the Beasley Best Community of Caring (BBCC) was born. BBCC created and distributed scripts for 30- and 60-second public service announcements, asking stations to air spots a minimum of ten times each week. These campaign announcements were supported through social media, articles, blogs, interviews and podcasts. In addition to on-air support, each market partnered with a local group working on an issue important to their community. In 2018 topics included opioid addiction, mental health awareness, autism spectrum disorder and hunger. Through this partnership with its 64 stations across 15 markets, BBCC donated nearly 33,000 spots and countless hours supporting causes important to the local communities it serves.

Commitment 2018

The 2018 midterm elections were historic and marked the highest voter turnout seen in midterms since 1914. Months before the election, while the candidates were on the campaign trail, Hearst Television was there to bring viewers important information to help them make critical choices. Hearst Television stations were committed to covering this election cycle like none other by digging deeper and exposing issues as they emerged, hosting a record-setting 98 debates and airing 5,034 political stories and segments, adding up to over 13,178 minutes of coverage. This provided television and digital audiences with both answers and assurances. It’s a commitment like never before with ten months of unprecedented, investigative, issue-oriented and innovative coverage.

Legislative Lifeline for First Responders

WKMG-TV presented a series of investigative reports featuring first responders diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), providing a platform for these men and women to expose the state’s failure to recognize PTSD as a medical injury. Under Florida law at the time, workers’ compensation insurance was not available for those diagnosed with PTSD unless they could prove they were also physically injured during the emergency call. The station’s reporting began with the story of one of the officers assigned to remove the dead from the Pulse Night Club. This segment led to a flood of responses from first responders struggling with PTSD who had been afraid to come forward. On March 27, 2018, Governor Rick Scott signed the Workers’ Compensation Benefits for First Responders Act into law. Governor Scott said WKMG’s reporting was instrumental in the passage and signing of the new law.

Preston and Steve's Camp Out for Hunger

Philadelphia is among the poorest of the top ten American cities. While food insecurity is decreasing across the rest of the country, the city is home to more hungry people than ever before and the number is growing. Preston and Steve, WMMR’s top-rated morning hosts, decided to do something about it and the annual “Camp Out for Hunger” was created. Now in its 21st year, “Camp Out” is the largest single-location food drive in America, generating millions of meals. The 2018 Preston and Steve Camp Out for Hunger collected food and cash donations totaling over two million meals for the hungry.

Go Jim Go!

Go Jim Go! is a 333-mile bicycle ride through WREG-TV’s viewing area led by meteorologist, Jim Jaggers. One week each fall, Jim rides to raise money for LeBonheur Children’s Hospital. When the hospital opened in 1952, LeBonheur’s founders promised that its doors would always be open to children in need. To keep that promise, monetary donations are critical for the hospital’s operations. During Go Jim Go!, Jim and his team stop at schools, businesses, farms and other locations to collect donations raised by a wide-range of supporters in the community. To help support the effort, WREG features the lifesaving and ground-breaking work being done at LeBonheur. In 2018, WREG raised $370,000, increasing the total amount raised by the station to $2.9 million.

Mending Puerto Rico

In the wake of Hurricane Maria, a local Tallahassee couple started collecting relief supplies for the residents of their hometown, Jayuya, P.R. The station soon began covering their efforts and within days, several truckloads of relief supplies were collected and on their way to Jayuya. Wanting to do more, a WCTV reporting crew traveled to Jayuya to document how supplies donated in Tallahassee were helping people recover from the hurricane’s devastation. The station also highlighted the continued struggles many were having getting money for housing repairs. Rather than continuing to wait for the Federal Emergency Management Association to approve or deny financial aid, the station sprang into action and helped raise funds, equipment and materials to help provide new roofs for homes in Jayuya.

Thank a Vet

Thirteen years ago, station staff learned of local veterans living in the woods in their southern Michigan community. To provide a solution to the days and weeks of red tape our veterans must navigate to get critical assistance, WLEN-FM created the Veterans Dire Needs Fund. Annually on Veterans Day, the station collects money for local vets and raises awareness for homeless veterans and their critical needs. This event has grown from $5,000 raised in the first year to more than $30,000 raised in 2018. More than $250,000 has been raised over the years to help support Lenawee County veterans with a goal of helping local veterans to live as proudly as they served.

WYCT Cat Country 98.7 and Santa Rosa Kids House

Beyond its effective approach to child abuse cases, the Santa Rosa Kids’ House offers on-site specialized sexual abuse therapy to help child victims and their families recover. To help raise fundsw and awareness for Santa Rosa Kids House, WYCT hosted its first-ever Spring Jam. Tickets were only $10 for an all-ages show featuring popular country music acts. This inaugural event raised nearly $15,000 for Santa Rosa Kids House.