Newspaper giving the homeless a voice
ARCATA- An advocacy newspaper has been battling the stigma of homelessness in Humboldt County for more than a year.
Humboldt Edge is a volunteer-run newspaper which funded through donations only. The paper uses the homeless and impoverished as the contributors.
"There's a power in their voice that comes through when it's edited well and when you allow it to come through," said Lorena Boswell, the Founder of Humboldt Edge.
Boswell runs the Volunteer Center at Humboldt State University. She founded the paper in October of 2013 using her grassroots organizing and print journalism experience.
"There's a lot of fermenting issues and conversation and dialogue going on in this county and it just felt like the right time and place for a paper to kind of focus some of that," Boswell said.
A homeless contributor from the beginning of the paper, LJ Haven, says he's honored and privileged to be a part of this effort.
"I love being out there with the people, getting other peoples' stories, bringing them to light and giving them a voice to the public because we're so downtrodden," said Haven.
Haven is one of five to ten homeless contributors who work on the free newspaper. He says his love of writing is only part of why he became a contributor.
"I wanted to shed light on particular problems that I've witnessed here in Humboldt County since I've been here and find a way to combat them by every peaceful means," Haven said.
Eight editions have been released so far and the next one will be out this April.
"My interest really is that people other than the homeless read it. People in the City Council, people in the Board of Supervisors read these articles and understand what these people are saying and understand what needs to be done," said Dave Rosso, a Co-Editor of Humboldt Edge.
"I hope they learn about the humanity and the struggle and the challenges and the sort of structural roadblocks to getting off the street," said Boswell.
Humboldt Edge newspapers are available throughout Humboldt County. To make a donation for the paper, visit humboldtedge.org