What people say…

Everyone has a valuable contribution to make to local community newspapers. Whether they have ideas for stories, take great photographs, have an interest in local sport or children's activities, everyone in the community can make a really important contribution. Community Media Group in partnership with Brookes University has worked with many people from all backgrounds; some who do not have English as their first language or people who lack confidence in their abilities to communicate. By taking part in our training courses, we have helped people to overcome these obstacles and improve their lives.

As a dyslexic with a spelling age tested to be an eight-year-old I had no idea that I could train to be a community journalist. The course helped to not only build my confidence but also my self-esteem which from being unemployed for more than a year at that point had hit almost rock bottom.

JY - Leys News Community Journalist

I can't work at present because of long standing difficulties with agoraphobia and anxiety, and was looking for something to do on a voluntary basis that was stimulating and would get me out of the house, but without too much pressure. We have just completed a second issue of Cowley News and I am so pleased to be involved. Through volunteer community journalism I have to talk to strangers, and get out of the house a bit more. It can be difficult, but I feel it has had a beneficial effect on a personal level, helping me to slowly gain in confidence.

HC - Cowley News Community Journalist

When I moved to Oxford I didn't know anyone, but as a volunteer with the newspaper I have an excuse to talk to people and go anywhere as a photographer. I feel comfortable and encouraged to settle down. Because I am volunteering on the estate where I live, it has made me feel part of the community and I have made local friends. My confidence has improved a lot and I am much more comfortable expressing myself in English. I feel the excellent training I have received and the experience I have gained through volunteering puts me in a better position to find a job.

KB - Rose Hill News Community Photojournalist

Hi there. The paper's just arrived and it really does look the best ever ... thanks so much wonderful team for getting it to this place - it feels so established now and exactly what I dreamed it would be all those years ago when we were first getting off the blocks. ... Hurrahs to you!

HG – Community Worker for Cowley News

All of us at Leys CDI so much appreciate the support Leys News gives us, right through the year, by sharing what we are doing - and planning - with the local community. Thanks to the whole Leys News team for working so hard and effectively to make a great community paper.

Sally Meachim, Clockhouse Project, Leys Community Development Initiative (Leys CDI)