A lot has changed since COVID-19 toppled our world as we knew it. Reporting, as we knew it, has also changed. This series illustrates an important fact: Community journalism-- with its interconnectedness and its grassroots approach ---is as vital to a community as a local hospital or a local business, and especially so in a time of crisis.

This piece captures the candid story of a local family who, like many. others around the country and the world, has had to re-work its daily routine to accommodate parents working from home and kids learning from home.

To make things more fun for his son's 6th birthday, Phil Trimble asked Waverly Mayor Adam Hoffman and Waverly Fire Chief Dennis Happel to help Kohen's birthday special. They gladly obliged and drove down the neighborhood. The big red truck and the siren attracted a lot of attention, and left a lasting impression on young Kohen, as you can tell by his responses.

Interviewing kids is a special kind of journalistic skill and no reporter could ever do this without the help of really dedicated moms.

As you can tell, Lani Trimble, a para educator at the LIED Center in Waverly, helped me tremendously.

I appreciate her trust and her patience. Moms truly make. great reporters and are an. invaluable asset for deadline-pressured community journalists at any time, but especially so in COVID-19 times, which have streamlined already bone-thin news staffs to bone-marrow level.

This is how community journalism works in my experience. It is for the people and of the people.

A. virus cannot take this away.