RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Northside Vibes is the only newspaper in Richmond that’s dedicated to providing good news, and only good news.
The newspaper mainly focuses on the Northside area, but the free paper’s mission is to highlight people who are having a positive impact on the community.
Deone McWilliams, CEO of Flavor News and Northside Vibes’ editor in chief, created RVA’s only good news newspaper in September 2014.
She credits her grandson for first sparking the company idea of Flavor News in 2010.
“I was trying to locate on TV a fun and educational program. He said, “Momma D, the bad news is scaring all the kids. You got to do something,'” McWilliams said. “So my response was what do we do? He said, ‘Momma D, you have a computer, you like people and you can type real fast, can’t you just type a good news newspaper?’"
Fast forward years later, McWilliams has been shedding a positive light on community members with her newspaper for the past four years.
“I just wanted to dig deeply within the communities and turn frowns into smiles,” McWilliams said.
Before McWilliams started doing her act of kindness, she was in corporate America. She decided to take a leap of faith and leave to do something different where she could help the community.
“I gave it all up - the 3,000 square foot home, the sports cars," McWilliams said. “I lost everything and I had $22 to my name."
Regardless of her situation, Brown was dedicated to serving the community, and that’s when Northside Vibes was born.
“I would go out in the communities at 6-6:30 in the morning," McWilliams said. “I just wanted everyone to know we’re getting ready to launch a good news newspaper.”
McWilliams says being born and raised in Richmond she understands why Richmond gets a bad rep, but the goal of the newspaper is to get rid of the stigma in the Northside of Richmond and to bring optimism back to the city.
“I think when you’re coming to RVA, you need to know the great things that are happening here,” McWilliams said.
And now on the first Friday of every month, Northside Vibes publishes a new issue and recognizes many deserving people in the community.
“For us here in Northside Vibes, we make it our ultimate goal to get here and bring to life the good news throughout the community," McWilliams said. “Our janitors, our cooks, our parking attendants all deserve to be featured because we appreciate them.”
As the newspaper continues to grow, her grandson Nyriian Jiggetts says he always knew she could do something special.
“I’m so proud of her.” Jiggetts said. “I knew she was going to work every day her hardest to make sure my dream would come true. I knew Richmond had some good news, but I didn’t know it had this much.”
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