Journalism Guidelines

The brief description below explains our approaches to supporting journalism and the types of projects we seek to fund as part of the Journalism program's 2021-2025 strategy. For any questions you may have about our work or to inquire about applying for funding, please feel free to reach out to [email protected]


The Joyce Foundation’s Journalism Program seeks to deepen the impact of Foundation programs’ investment in policy by supporting journalism that shines a light on conditions we hope to change, policies we support, and success stories that present solutions to problems. We support high-quality investigative, public affairs journalism in the Great Lakes region, as well as local, state and national media – primarily nonprofit – covering issues related to Joyce program areas. We also support public affairs journalism training for early career journalists, particularly journalists of color.


What types of journalism grantmaking do you support?

We primarily support nonprofit journalism organizations that cover issues in the Great Lakes region related to Joyce program areas. We also selectively fund national media coverage of critical issues in our region. Funded platforms have included digital news organizations, radio, and podcast.

What are examples of the journalism you support?

Among recent recipients of our Journalism grants is Report for America, a nonprofit service program that places emerging journalists in local newsrooms to report on under-covered issues. In 2019, the Foundation provided funding for six reporters to be based in statehouses in the Great Lakes region for 18 months.

Another grant recipient is Bridge magazine, a nonprofit news organization operated by the Center for Michigan. Our funding has supported Bridge’s coverage of the environment and other key issues behind public policy and civic life in Michigan.

A third grantee is The Trace, a non-partisan, nonprofit newsroom dedicated to shining more light on the country’s gun violence crisis. With our funding, The Trace has reported on gun violence impacts and gun safety legislation and policies in Chicago and the Great Lakes, collaborating with regional media partners.

Do you provide general operating support for news organizations?

No, our journalism funding is issues and project based.

Do you fund documentary filmmaking?

No, we do not support documentary filmmaking.

Do you fund journalism education?

We do not support general education for journalism students. We have supported professional development for working journalists focused on important issues, such as understanding the census.