Report: Fund-Raising For Nonprofit Journalism Accelerated In 2021

NewsMatch, the fund-raising initiative that assists nonprofit newsrooms, raised $12 million in 2021, half for that year and half for 2022 and 2023, the Institute for Nonprofit Newsrooms announced this week.

The $12 million total for 2021, reported as of December 31, far outpaces the $5.1 million raised in 2020. And the money raised for 2022 and 2023 represents the first time NewsMatch donors provided seed money for future funding cycles.

NewsMatch benefits nonprofit news organizations across North America. In the last two months of 2021, 300 nonprofit newsrooms participated in the NewsMatch program, INN reported. Plus, NewsMatch incentives and bonuses encouraged individual donations from their audiences.



The 300 participating newsrooms marks a 15% increase from NewsMatch 2020 and includes 77 startups founded since 2019. It’s more than four times the number of newsrooms that participated in the first NewsMatch in 2016. The NewsMatch campaign has helped to raise more than $150 million since its inception, including money from individual donors in local brands’ coverage areas, INN said.

While the money raised in 2021 is a relatively small amount, the growth in funding and participants — and the cumulative amount raised for nonprofit journalism since 2016 — suggests a significant acceleration in the nonprofit news movement.

NewsMatch was started by Knight Foundation in 2016, then run for several years by the Democracy Fund. It became an INN program in 2020. Its funding recipients are overwhelmingly hyperlocal newsrooms, with many serving communities of color. Some of those organizations that have received support include:

  • Evanston RoundTable, Evanston, Illinois
  • Daily Yonder, Whitesburg, Kentucky
  • New Haven Independent, New Haven, Connecticut
  • Voices of Monterey Bay, Monterey, California
  • Indian Country Today, Phoenix, Arizona
  • BirminghamWatch, Birmington, Alabama
  • Chesapeake Bay Journal, Mayo, Maryland
  • Lower Cape TV, Eastham, Massachusetts
  • Mountain Journal, Bozeman, Montana
  • KOSU, Stillwater, Oklahoma

See the full list here.

In the NewsMatch program, local and national foundations provide gifts to the Fund for Nonprofit News, hosted at the Miami Foundation. The fund then matches individual donations made to a select group of nonprofit newsrooms during the year-end NewsMatch campaign, up to a predetermined cap.

Newsrooms receiving matching funds are required to be active members of INN, itself a membership organization that supports and advances independent, nonprofit news organizations committed to original, fact-based reporting.

In addition to the INN, NewsMatch partners are the Miami Foundation and the New Revenue Hub.

Donors in 2021 included Democracy Fund, Knight Foundation, the Meta Journalism Project, the Bernard and Anne Spitzer Charitable Trust, Inasmuch Foundation, the Independence Public Media Foundation, the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation, Loud Houd, Natasha and Dirk Ziff, the Present Progressive Fund at Schwab Charitable, Sarena Snider, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, Walton Family Foundation and the Wyncote Foundation. 

1 comment about "Report: Fund-Raising For Nonprofit Journalism Accelerated In 2021".
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  1. Bode Lang from BOSS, January 7, 2022 at 7:59 p.m.

    These "startups" are just left-wing journalists who want to start fresh to make people think they aren't pushing the same garage that NYT or CNN pushes daily. These are the same people, putting on a new disguise. They tried this with "Fact-checkers" and they've been repeatedly exposed as the same propagandists as the MSM, albeit with a different name. It won't work. I guess that's why Democrats are already pushing for the government to subsidize local journalism under the guise that they are doing a "public good."

    WAPO, TheAtlantic, TIME, L.A. Times, among others, are already owned by left-wing billionaires. Even the NYT's largest shareholder outside the family is Carlos Slim Helu, probably the most corrupt billionaire in the western hemisphere. People know what the media is, and they're all broke because of it. But the media will never acknowledge it, but instead, blame it on technology and social media. Keep milking left-wing non-profits like the Knight Foundation because that's really all you've got. 

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