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City news site appeals for fresh cash boost to fund journalist

Valentina Hernandez GomezA city news website is seeking fresh funding for a specialist journalism role.

Bristol 24/7 is looking for a new sponsor for the post of climate and sustainability editor, which it created earlier this year after receiving £5,000 from NatWest.

Valentina Hernández Gómez has recruited to the role earlier this year thanks to the investment, which paid for the part-time position for an initial six months.

Now, B24/7 is appealing to new sponsors to come forward in order to keep funding Valentina’s work.

The site’s community and partnerships manager Meg Houghton Gilmour said: “Our members were some of the first people to tell us that they wanted a greater focus on the climate in our coverage.

“We are incredibly grateful that our community of members, along with support from NatWest, has made this possible.”

“What I appreciate about Valentina’s role is that it provides us with an opportunity to put a local lens on global issues.

“We can see how problems that seem too big, and occasionally distant, are impacting us on a local level, and – perhaps more importantly – what we can do about them.”

In addition to reporting, Valentina’s role has led to writing opinion articles to hosting podcasts, being a keynote speaker at B24/7’s members’ meeting and being invited on to city-wide panel discussions.

Valentina, pictured, said: “I feel honoured to carry this responsibility. I’ve truly enjoyed my role as climate and sustainability editor in a city like Bristol, with so much to do in the environmental field but still with a long way to go.

“Grassroot organisations and community initiatives are continuously pushing for change and if things keep going this way, the future is definitely looking hopeful.”

Matt Hatcher, form NatWest’s South West board, told B24/7: “The impact of Bristol 24/7’s climate and sustainability editor appointment has been both instant and huge.

“The stories that Valentina has led in the role have shone a new spotlight on the climate and sustainability issues affecting the region and, just as importantly, the disrupters and entrepreneurs who are pioneering ways to challenge them.

“Climate is a massive priority for us as a bank and we want to support more businesses and people make a change today for a greener tomorrow.

“That is why we felt it was so important to support B24/7’s ambition to appoint a climate and sustainability editor; a role which is supporting the city’s ambition to drive positive change.”