This latest grant cycle brings the Fund closer to its vision of a resilient North Carolina, where all communities have access to trusted and reliable news for a stronger, healthier democracy.
(Raleigh, North Carolina) Oct. 27, 2022. The North Carolina Local News Lab Fund at the North Carolina Community Foundation has awarded more than $1,500,000 in new grants to 31 news and community organizations—the most significant investment the Fund has made to date. This latest round of one-year grants expands investments in the Fund’s network of trusted messengers to deepen their community impact and extend the reach of useful, high quality news and information.
This year’s grant recipients include a diverse range of teams serving communities marginalized by race, class, and geography. With this scaled-up slate of funding, the NC Local News Lab Fund increases the number and amount of general operating grants deployed to organizations that deliver high-quality, accessible, and reliable news in North Carolina. This critical support provides grant partners with even more flexibility to reinforce their capacity and sustain their operations—especially organizations that have been historically excluded from traditional philanthropy due to racial and systemic inequities.
“When we launched the NC Local News Lab Fund in 2017, our mission was to transform the news and information infrastructure in North Carolina to reach communities that mainstream media have never consistently served,” said Lizzy Hazeltine, Director of the NC Local News Lab Fund. “Five years later, we are thrilled to reach this funding milestone and scale our support of organizations who provide local NC residents with the vital information they need to make decisions about their health and democracy.”
In this latest round of funding, the NC Local News Lab Fund welcomes 11 new grant partners, including Refugee Community Partnership, Code the Dream, Triad City Beat, QnotesCarolinas, and the Chatham News + Record. These direct grants are in addition to support of the NC Local News Workshop at Elon University, which the Fund renewed this year for $250,000. The Workshop’s statewide programming connects news and information organizations to one another, building their capacity to listen to their communities, practice racial equity, and sustain their work.
The Fund also renewed its support of 20 longstanding grant partners, including Enlace Latino NC, the first Spanish-language digital, nonprofit news outlet in the state. A grant partner since the Fund’s inception, Enlace Latino NC was awarded a $75,000 general operating grant to continue equipping Latino residents, including farmworkers, with reliable Spanish-language journalism. Enlace Latino NC’s reporting closes information and language-access gaps on pressing issues from extreme weather events to public health crises like COVID-19, while advancing a more representative and community-serving news ecosystem in the long term.
Crucial support from the NC Local News Lab Fund’s funding partners makes it possible to scale the Fund’s grantmaking and community impact. This grant cycle, Burroughs Wellcome Fund (BWF) joins Dogwood Health Trust, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, Prentice Foundation, and Democracy Fund in supporting organizations filling critical news and information gaps in North Carolina. Together, this coalition has invested more than $3 million in strengthening NC’s news and information ecosystem since the pandemic began, and a total of more than $4 million since 2018.
The NC Local News Lab Fund’s grantees are selected by a group of national and state experts with deep ties to North Carolina communities, expertise in evolving models of journalism, and a shared vision for accessible, inclusive news and information. To learn more about the Fund’s selection committee, click here.
This round of grant recipients are:
Asheville Writers In The Schools And Community: $75,000
Border Belt Independent: $50,000
Carolina Public Press: $30,000
Charlotte Journalism Collaborative: $50,000
Chatham News + Record, a project grant for La Voz de Chatham: $30,000
Code the Dream: $30,000
El Centro Hispano: $50,000
Emancipate NC: $50,000
Enlace Latino NC: $75,000
Hola Carolina: $50,000
ISLA-Immersion for Spanish Language Acquisition: $30,000
JMPRO TV: $50,000
Migrant Roots Media: $30,000
Narrative Arts: $50,000
NC FIELD: $50,000
North Carolina Health News: $50,000
Refugee Community Partnership: $30,000
Salud Sin Fronteras: $50,000
Student Action with Farmworkers: $50,000
Support the Port: $30,000
Toxic Free NC: $30,000
Triad City Beat: $30,000
WFAE-University Radio Foundation: $30,000
WNC Health Network: $30,000
Working Films: $30,000
You Can Vote: $30,000
For more information about the Fund, visit www.nclocalnews.org.
About the North Carolina Local News Lab Fund
The North Carolina Local News Lab Fund is a pooled fund housed at the North Carolina Community Foundation. The fund was established in 2017 to ensure that everyone in North Carolina can find, trust, and use high-quality news and information, delivered by providers that are reflective of and engaged with their communities. This coalition of local and national funding partners is building a resilient, sustainable news and information network that serves all North Carolina residents with accessible, inclusive news and information.
For more information about the NC Local News Lab Fund at NCCF, contact Lizzy Hazeltine, firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the North Carolina Community Foundation
The North Carolina Community Foundation (NCCF) is the only statewide community foundation serving North Carolina and has administered over $243 million in grants since 1988. With more than $440 million in assets, NCCF sustains more than 1,200 endowments and partners with a network of affiliates to award grants and scholarships in communities across the state.
An important component of NCCF’s mission is to ensure rural philanthropy has a voice at the local, regional and national levels. For more information, visit nccommunityfoundation.org.