A LETTER FROM WURD RADIO’S PRESIDENT & CEO, SARA LOMAX-REESE
Written by Sara Lomax-Reese on March 19, 2020
Just a few months ago no one had ever heard of the Coronavirus or COVID-19. The concept of “social distancing” was unknown. And the idea that whole U.S. cities and foreign countries would be under quarantine was unthinkable.
But here we are. March 2020. And we are living in a brave new world. Coronavirus has presented unprecedented challenges for our local, national and global society. Here in Philly our lives have been upended, shaken to the core in just a matter of weeks. This has caused a cascade of anxiety, fear and worry. We see it in the stockpiling of toilet paper, the incessant barrage of bad news on cable networks, closures of schools, businesses, sporting and social events. And no one knows when it will end.
While this moment feels different from anything that has come before — at least in my lifetime — it also presents us with an opportunity to slow down, reconnect, reflect, listen and be still. To prioritize what is really important — health, family, community.
For many, WURD Radio is not only their primary source for trusted information but a place for community connection. This is critically important especially at a time when we are being directed to “socially isolate.” WURD is your outlet where you can speak and be heard, in real time, so you know you are not alone. We will be your connection to each other and the world.
Here’s what we are doing to serve you during this difficult time:
- We are committed to providing trustworthy, fact-based reporting on the coronavirus and how this will uniquely impact our community. You will hear from health-care professionals, emergency preparedness experts, elected officials, public health experts, small business-owners, leaders in finance and the global economy. We are committed to connecting you with the information you need to survive mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually and financially.
- We know that the digital divide is real. So in recognition of this unique moment where people will need to drastically change how they live and work, we want to leverage the power of our radio airwaves (and other platforms) to reach our most vulnerable populations — seniors, people with pre-existing health conditions, those who are economically fragile and people who do not have digital access. Please spread the WURD to friends, family and neighbors and encourage them to tune in to 900AM, 96.1FM, wurdradio.com or download the WURD App.
- WURD is also an open source to not only discuss the events and concerns of the day, but to also brainstorm solutions. We want to hear from you, but we also want to hear your ideas on how we face these challenges together.
Radio has always been a powerful force in the Black community and it is even more vital now. We know you rely on WURD Radio for public-service journalism that is created specifically for, by and about our community. Whether it relates to this public health crisis or other pressing issues that affect our people, we are proud to be able to provide this critical service. But we can’t do it without your support.
If you value what we do here, please support the station. If you’re not a forWURD member yet, please consider joining today by CLICKING HERE. If you have a business or work for one, please consider advertising. Supporting our work means you are supporting your voice and a crucial tool you and your family use every day.
At this uncertain time, we can find inspiration in the words of our ancestors who were guided by faith, resilience and determination in times of unbearable hardship. Stanza two from James Weldon Johnson’s Lift Every Voice and Sing offers powerful perspective:
Stony the road we trod
Bitter the chastening rod
Felt in the days when hope unborn had died
Yet with a steady beat
Have not our weary feet
Come to the place for which our fathers sighed?
We have come over a way that with tears has been watered
We have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered
Out from the gloomy past
‘Til now we stand at last
Where the white gleam of our bright star is cast
Stay tuned and stay well,
President & CEO