Longtime Valley newspaper now in need of financial help

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Call it the popularity of the internet or the lack of reader subscriptions, whatever it is a newspaper that has served the Valley's African-American community for close to 50 years is now on life support.

The California Advocate has taken the last couple of months off to reorganize its financial structure and raise money

"If you want to communicate with the African American community the best place and the only place almost in Fresno and a lot of other communities is the African American newspaper," said Mark Kimber, California Advocate Publisher.

Kimber said Fresno's only African American owned media outlet has no plans to shut down.

Local clergy leaders joined Kimber Thursday morning at the company's office in Downtown Fresno to show their support for the fledgling paper.

"We have other media outlets in the African American community, but the Advocate is clearly the leader. The legendary media outlet in our community," said Rev. B.T. Lewis, Fresno.

According to Kimber, new paid readers are needed to help the Advocate's existence. The company has set up a GoFundMe account to help with the paper's bottom line

"Our goal is to raise a thousand new subscribers as we move forward at $40 each for the year's subscription. We're going to have to switch more to a subscription based."

Going online only would help the Advocate's budget, but the goal is to maintain a bi-monthly printed form of the paper

"We do have an electronic issue, however, our community and our readers say they still want the printed version also. And that's unique to our papers," said Kimber.

The publisher tells us the plan is to start printing editions in time for the presidential election.

As Kimber said, the Advocate has never missed an election in 49 years and it would be a shame to miss this one.
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