Promoting the work and advancing the role of women in the news media across the globe is critical to transparency and the diversity of voices. The Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists, the first ever funding initiative of its kind, enables the IWMF to dramatically expand its support of women journalists. Established with a $4 million gift from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, the Fund will support projects including educational opportunities, investigative reporting and media development initiatives.
The Fund was developed in the spirit of Howard Buffett’s support for 2005 IWMF Courage in Journalism Award Winner Anja Niedringhaus. “I was greatly saddened when Anja was killed this year in Afghanistan,” Howard Buffett said. “I had the pleasure of meeting Anja when I was able to support her Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University. In that spirit, this Fund will give outstanding women journalists the ability to turn their reporting ambitions into reality.”
The Howard G. Buffett Foundation has been a long time champion of women journalists.
“Through annual grants, we are excited by this unprecedented chance to provide significant support to hundreds of deserving women reporters over the next decade,” IWMF Executive Director Elisa Lees Muñoz said. “The Fund allows us to amplify their voices in the field, and to pursue opportunities which will set them up for success and leadership roles in their newsrooms.”
The creation of the Fund comes at a time when journalists increasingly struggle to secure limited resources for their important work. Women journalists in particular face an acute lack of funding opportunities.
The IWMF will make an annual total of $230,000 worth of grants to support women journalists in their projects and endeavors. The fund is not limited in either the grant dollar amount or the number of grants awarded within the annual total. There will be up to four rounds of funding every year for ten years.