Independent journalists or those working on the staff of either a for-profit or non-profit news organization worldwide are eligible to apply for a grant from the Fund for Environmental Journalism.
Membership of the Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ) is not required, but to qualify for the fund, applicants must meet eligibility requirements for SEJ membership. Membership disqualifiers include paid employment in public relations, media relations, or lobbying on environment-related issues.
The Fund is available to reporters interested in environmental reporting. The SEJ Fund aims to underwrite the best in investigative or explanatory public service journalism. The jury will look at news value, undiscovered or under-reported news, a fresh take on a familiar story and potential for community impact in deciding applications to support.
The SEJ’s Fund for Environmental Journalism will give grants of up to $5,000 to underwrite selected story projects. Applicants are limited to one grant per 2-year period and two grants per 5-year period but there is no lifetime cap on the number of grants a journalist may receive.
All application materials must be in English language; submitted using the forms and links provided; and applicants based outside of North America must give consideration to how they will pay the application fee and receive grant funds. The application fee is $40.
In addition to the application form, applicants should upload four vital documents for their applications to be considered, including:
- Proposal narrative – double-spaced type, maximum approximately 1200 words including timeline and dissemination plan
- Budget – maximum two pages. Applicants are encouraged to apply for the minimum budget required for success of the project rather than ask for the maximum grant amount. Partial funding may be offered. Provide detail, such as airfare based on search date, lab-test price quote, etc. In addition, each personnel line item, including journalist stipends and professional services, must include each professional’s name, projected number of hours worked, and a rate of pay.
- Resume/CV – maximum two pages
- At least one letter of commitment, or at least interest, from a publisher, broadcast organization or news site manager. Failure to include this or to explain its absence will compromise the competitiveness of the proposal.
Applicants may provide additional documents and links that they feel will strengthen their case for funding.
Applications, which are online, can be accessed at http://www.sej.org/fund-environmental-journalism-member-application for SEJ members and http://www.sej.org/fund-environmental-journalism-nonmember-application for non-SEJ members.
The deadlines for the submission of applications are July 15, and November 15 but applications are accepted starting 60 days before the respective deadline.