An Open Call for Local News Coverage Funding


It describes itself as a “$500 million movement to reimagine local news.” Coming April 30, it will begin accepting applications for its first open call for funding focused on addressing what it believes are “the long-standing inequalities in journalistic coverage of underserved communities.”

Local news outlets that fill coverage gaps with original reporting — and have a budget under $1 million — will be eligible to apply for Press Forward funding.

The “Press Forward Open Call on Closing Local Coverage Gaps” is designed to provide 100-plus news outlets with an expected $100,000 each in funding, regardless of whether they are non-profit or for-profit entities. The funding will be unrestricted, general operating support, allowing the news organizations to spend it as needed to sustain and grow their operations.

The application will be available through June 12 at

Dale R. Anglin, Director of Press Forward, commented, “Strong local journalism means that more people have the power to hold their leaders accountable, to make the important choices about their daily lives, and to keep our communities strong. However, for too long, underserved communities have not been included in those narratives, the truth of their lived experiences not reflected, to the detriment of our democracy. We’re looking for outlets that are filling these important gaps, in rural and urban communities across the country.”

Press Forward is prioritizing organizations that are producing and delivering news and information to underserved audiences such as communities of color, linguistically diverse communities, low-wealth rural communities, and others not adequately served, reached or represented.

The Open Call is one of two that will take place this year, with additional calls for  proposals in subsequent years. The second, this fall, will focus on local news transformation, with funding guidelines being released in the coming months. Local news initiatives that don’t qualify will be able to fill out an organizational profile on the Press Forward grantmaking platform JustFund, which coalition funders will have access to.

Press Forward launched a decade ago, and is housed at The Miami Foundation, a philanthropic organization led by President/CEO Rebecca Fishman Lipsey. It operates under the fiscal sponsorship of the foundation.


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