April Franklin

Weekend Edition Host

Before her current role as the local host of WXXI's Weekend Edition and reporter at WXXI News, April spent 12 years working in the Emergency Department at URMC.

Her passion for community and storytelling led her to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Broadcast from SUNY Brockport.

April is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists and the current Vice President of Rochester Association of Black Journalists.

Ways to Connect

Marianne Sweet / Knitted Knockers Roc

Finding an affordable and comfortable prosthetic for women who have had mastectomies is necessary—the scars of battling breast cancer last long after the treatment. A worldwide army of knitters is helping to solve this problem with handmade prostheses called Knitted Knockers.

The soft prosthesis is knitted in different colors and sizes by a network of volunteers who distribute them to individual women, breast cancer organizations, and doctor's offices worldwide free of charge. A downloadable pattern is used create them with reccomended materials.

Gino Fanelli / WXXI News

After nearly 50 years, the South Wedge Food Program will be moving out of the South Wedge neighborhood and into northeast Rochester. 

On Tuesday, City Council approved a five-year lease that would allow the food pantry to move into a 4,000-square-foot vacant space behind Lincoln Branch Library beginning Oct. 15. The area at Avenue D and Joseph Avenue previously housed a chapter of the Hillside Children’s Center.

WeStarMoney from Pexels / WXXI News

The COVID-19 pandemic is still affecting the supply of certain retail items, but it's not toilet paper and water this time around.

A combined shortage of labor, material, and transportation has made it difficult for grocery stores like Tops and Wegmans to keep pet food, sports drinks, and other items in stock. 

In a statement, Tops Market said several areas will be affected through the rest of this year and into 2022.

Ibero- American Action league / WXXI News

Ibero-American Action League and the Rochester Latinx Leaders Roundtable have joined forces to address Rochester’s Latinx community issues. 

The Rochester's Latinx agenda, a 53-page document, was created to address issues of diversity, equity and inclusion for Latinos of various experiences. 

April Franklin/WXXI News

(WXXI News & AP) Hundreds of people marched in both Rochester and Seneca Falls on Saturday as part of nationwide protests demanding continued access to abortion.

The demonstrations happened days before the start of a new term for the Supreme Court that will decide the future of abortion rights in the United States, after appointments of justices by President Donald Trump strengthened conservative control of the high court.

In Seneca Falls, where the women’s suffrage movement was launched, Governor Kathy Hochul was among the speakers.

Image from video provided by Rochester City School District / WXXI News

Recruitment for bus drivers for the Rochester City School District continues, but Superintendent Lesli Myers-Small says that all students currently have transportation.

“All of the routes are covered at this point but if individuals call in that’s going to a slight to significant delay.” Myers-Small said Wednesday.

Max Schulte / WXXI News

RIT’s Randleman program is raising money to help current and future Randleman students pay for sign language certification.

The program started in 2019, and provides students with mentors from similar cultural backgrounds. The goal is to increase diversity of sign language interpreters working with deaf people of color in areas such as education and healthcare.

University of Rochester

When New York state’s vaccine mandate for health care workers was announced in August, unvaccinated hospital and nursing home employees were faced with a decision: Get vaccinated or lose your job. At the deadline, a few employees who once stood strong in their fight for free will, are now choosing the vaccine.

Devante Ridgeway is one of hundreds of University of Rochester Medical Center employees who got vaccinated just days shy of the state’s deadline. The environmental services worker said he would have remained unvaccinated had he found other employment.

Compeer Rochester

While studies show there are social and economic benefits for young people who have a mentor, only a third of them actually have one. 

Compeer Rochester is hoping to match the dozens of young people in their mentorship program with a positive role model and has partnered with Roc Freedom Riders for an event to highlight the need for local mentors in the Rochester area.

Habitat for Humanity / Habitat for Humanity

Tyshaun Cauldwell was shot and killed by a stray bullet near his home on Whitney street in Rochester in 2001. His life ended at the tender age of 10, but his memory lives on in Rochester JOSANA neighborhood, where he grew up. 

Representatives from Habitat for Humanity and Seneca Park Zoo joined Cauldwell's mother, Charlotte Freeman, on Tuesday to celebrate the completion of the Tyshaun Cauldwell Memorial Garden; a tree in the garden marks the spot where he died 20 years ago.