The European Journalism Centre (EJC), in partnership with the Facebook Journalism Project (FJP), is pleased to announce 68 more news organisations and freelance journalists receiving grants through Wave 2 of the European Journalism COVID-19 Support Fund.
Wave 1, launched in April 2020, saw €1,530,000 awarded to 94 news organisations and freelancers. In Wave 2, grantees are serving local and regional communities and communities of interest across 28 European countries. This includes countries previously represented in Wave 1, as well as 7 new countries: Albania, Czech Republic, Latvia, Luxembourg, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden.
“We are absolutely thrilled by this news. The whole Marsactu team is beyond grateful for this amazing support that is given to us through this funding. Not only is it really good and relieving news for our finances, but it is also a mark of recognition of our work that we profoundly appreciate.” Marsactu, France (Wave 2 grantee)
A particular focus for Wave 2 of the Fund were journalists and publications serving underreported and/or underrepresented groups and communities. Grantees in this round of funding are working with, and serving the information needs of, geographical and communities of interest including: marginalised communities in Northern Ireland (people experiencing homelessness, and those living on low incomes); people disadvantaged through poverty, lack of education and training, unemployment, physical and mental illness and disability; asylum seekers and migrants; Roma female key workers; the LGBTIQ+ community and sex workers; senior citizens over the age of 65; BAME communities (women and non-binary people of colour) living in the UK, and more.
Through the Emergency Fund, 30 news organisations and 24 freelancers/ groups of freelance journalists are being awarded grants of €5,000, €10,000 or €25,000 to address immediate and critical business needs caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds will be used, for example, to replace revenue from the making and distribution of printed publications or from donations / subscriptions / membership; to supplement or replace lost advertising revenue or revenue from complementary business activities, such as events; and to engage communities and their conversations within short-term COVID-19-related initiatives, such as newsletters, community groups or online events.
“The offer of support from the EJC is still sinking in and I feel really emotional. When I decided to go it alone almost ten years ago and take on Caerphilly Observer as a full-time job, I knew it would be difficult. The last seven months though has been the most challenging period of my career, but at the same time it has been one of the most rewarding. I’m often told by readers that they value what we do and this gave us the confidence to try new things with our membership programme. The funding will go a long way to help us continue our work.” Caerphilly Observer, Wales, United Kingdom (Wave 2 grantee)
Through the Endurance Fund, 14 news organisations are receiving grants of €10,000 or €25,000 for specific initiatives related to pivoting their business model during the COVID-19 crisis. These grants will be used, for example, to invest in resources (including technology, toolkits, people, and experts) to: build resilience within teams and leadership, facilitate effective cross-team collaboration and sharing of knowledge, create more/better pathways for community participation in the work of the news organisation, execute user-focused product development, or develop or launch reader-revenue models.
For Wave 2 of the Fund, the EJC followed the same independent judging process used in Wave 1. The process involves three steps: an eligibility check, an appraisal from qualified experts and EJC team members, and a due diligence check. We received 842 applications for Wave 2, of which 608 were for the Emergency Fund… Details here.