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Independence Public Media Foundation Announces $2.8 Million in Film and Journalism Grants to 30 Projects and Organizations

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

PHILADELPHIA, December 16, 2020 – The Independence Public Media Foundation (IPMF) announces a major investment in the local filmmaking community with grants totaling $1.3 million to filmmakers, festivals, and film organizations, with an emphasis on supporting artists from underrepresented communities, and films with a commitment to social justice. The foundation awarded the grants following a series of listening and learning sessions with local media-makers this fall.

This round of grants included a nominations process led by a committee of four women from diverse backgrounds and a deep understanding of the local film and media arts landscape. They awarded eighteen local filmmakers with grants totaling $400,000 to help them complete their film projects.

“I cannot wait to see so much beautiful and transformative work from the film community come to fruition in the coming year,” said Nuala Cabral, IPMF’s program officer. “We understand that filmmaking not only fosters community, it helps reveal truth, preserve memory, and spark joy and imagination in ways that better our democracy. These grants couldn’t have happened at a better time.”

Read Nuala’s essay on what IPMF board and staff learned during listening sessions with the local filmmaking community.

The foundation also awarded a $1.5 million, three-year operating support grant to Resolve Philadelphia, a nonprofit dedicated to improving local journalism by connecting and building trust between local newsrooms and the communities they serve through collaborative, solutions-oriented reporting. Earlier in the year, IPMF provided a $1 million grant to help Resolve launch “Equally Informed Philly,” a project to provide rapid response public health and pandemic-related news and information in multiple languages for the public, in response to COVID-19.

“Community media making and creative expression take on significantly more urgency during a crisis, particularly when people are cut off from personal contact with one another” noted IPMF President Molly de Aguiar. “We really felt that urgency, so we hustled to make grants that would keep people safe and connected during the pandemic, but we also laid a lot of groundwork this year for robust, community-led media making that helps people feel visible and powerful.”

In total, the foundation awarded $7.7 million in grants in 2020 to a wide array of journalism, film, digital literacy, community storytelling, and media training organizations, projects, and research, reflecting the foundation’s expansive definition of media. Additionally, IPMF made a number of grants this year to support media making for movement building that addresses police violence and community safety. The foundation also awarded nearly $800,000 in emergency support at the onset of the pandemic to its existing grantees.


About Independence Public Media Foundation

The Independence Public Media Foundation funds and supports creative, community-centered media and media making across Greater Philadelphia. The Foundation’s goals reflect an expansive definition of media, including journalism, digital literacy, and creative expression, as a pathway for building power with communities. Through grant-making and other programs, IPMF supports building and strengthening networks of people who are creating and sharing information, ideas, and stories for change and justice.

For more information, contact Enni Aigbomian,

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