IWMF Invites Applications for the Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists

Elisa Lees Munoz
Executive Director of IWMF

The International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) in Washington D.C., in the United States, is inviting applications from journalists or freelancers from around the world for the Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists which supports journalists and journalism projects including, , professional development opportunities, investigative reporting and media development initiatives led by women and non-binary people.

There are two different types of funding opportunities and an applicant may apply for one of them. These are the reporting projects or professional development opportunities. The Fund for Women Journalists will prioritize reporting projects pitched around underreported stories of global importance. The reporting projects include journalistic work in any media format, including but not limited to print, digital, broadcast, audio, video, photography and new media while the professional development opportunities can include security training, conferences, workshops and media development initiatives such as technical skills-building training.

Applicants are encouraged to consider a one-year timeline or less for completion and publication of their project, though exceptions are made on a case-by-case basis.

For reporting projects, organisers strongly recommend that entrants apply with a commitment from a news outlet (including a letter of interest from an editor) or a detailed pitching/distribution plan. The IWMF does not work with news outlets (such as the BBC) that do not honor the program’s crediting requirements.

The average grant size for the FWJ, from 2021 to 2022, was $6,000 USD. Submissions with timelines longer than one year or with requested budgets of $10,000+ will be considered on a limited basis. All applications must include a detailed budget and timeline. 

The FWJ will not award grants to cover tuition expenses for undergraduate or graduate degree programmes or to cover the purchase of equipment.

Freelance and staff journalists of any nationality may apply; applications must be submitted in English or Spanish, but reporting may be published in any language.

The IWMF accepts applications from individual women and nonbinary journalists and from teams of journalists.

Starting from January 2020, the Fund for Women Journalists has been accepting applications on a rolling basis; applications take approximately 4-6 weeks from submission to process, in rare circumstances however, the IWMF is able to expedite the grant review process for time-sensitive stories. It has supported more than 330 journalists from 47 countries since its inception in 2015.

For detailed information about the fund and to apply, please visit https://www.iwmf.org/programs/fund-for-women-journalists/.