The nonprofit news sector is becoming less reliant on foundation funding, thanks in part to increased interest from individual donors, a report from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation finds.

Based on open data from 18 news outlets, the report, Finding a Foothold: How Nonprofit News Ventures Seek Sustainability (53 pages, HTML or PDF), analyzed the ways in which nonprofit news organizations raise and spend money, with a focus on audience engagement, revenue generation, and organizational capacity. A follow-up to the Knight Foundation’s 2011 study Getting Local: How Nonprofit News Ventures Seek Sustainability, the report found that most of the 18 organizations have grown their revenue, some significantly; that many are developing a diverse set of revenue streams, including individual donors, sponsorships, events, and syndication; and that new models for audience engagement and content distribution are emerging.

In an opinion piece titled “Getting Gulf restoration right: Economics and environment can’t be separated,”  Scott Burns, who directs the Environment Focus Area at the Walton Family Foundation, says that “Operation 1-1-1 will help amplify the voices of Gulf residents, including fishermen, restaurant owners and community leaders, so they can make sure their states’ policymakers get restoration right.” A summary of Operation 1-1-1 projects is here.  

Toxic heavy metals found on the construction site of a planned $55 million replacement for the former Booker T. Washington High School in New Orleans will require the removal of 3 feet of soil in areas that won’t be covered by the new building’s concrete foundation or parking lots, according to a report submitted on behalf of the Recovery School District to the state Department of Environmental Quality.

The contaminants — including antimony, arsenic, barium, cadmium, copper, lead, mercury and zinc — were found in levels greater than state and federal safety standards allow.

Mark Moseley

Mark Moseley blogs at Your Right Hand Thief. Until mid 2014, Mark Moseley was The Lens' opinion writer, engagement specialist and coordinator for the Charter Schools Reporting Corps. After Katrina and...