ICFJ seeks pitches on minority women entrepreneurs


Minority women entrepreneurs are on the rise, and it’s about time. Women-owned businesses increased by 27% and minority-owned businesses increased by 38% between 2012 and 2007, according to 2012 U.S. Census Data. When we examine the rise of minority women entrepreneurs, we find that Asian women-owned business have increased 43%, Black women-owned businesses have increased 67%, Latina women-owned have increased by 87%, and American Indian and Alaskan Native women-owned businesses have increased by 36% over the same time period.

Minority women entrepreneurs still face hurdles when starting and growing their businesses. The media can play a role in highlighting success stories and road maps to successes, and inspiring more women to start their own businesses.

The International Center for Journalists, with the support of S&P Global is launching a new reporting contest to give journalists the opportunity to report on the accomplishments and tribulations of being a minority woman entrepreneur.

The program will offer grants between $1,000 and $5,000 to up to ten successful applicants. Selected applicants will receive the funds needed to cover the costs of their projects and advice from expert media mentors to support their projects’ development. The top three published stories will also receive cash prizes ($1,000 for 1st place, $500 for 2nd place, and $250 for 3rd place).

When do story projects need to be completed by?

All story projects must be completed between December 1, 2016 and February 15, 2017.

Program Dates:
November 7 – 27, 2016: Call for project proposals.
November 27, 2016: Last day to submit project proposal.
December 5, 2016: ICFJ announces selected applicants.
December 5, 2016 – January 31, 2017: Selected applicants conduct research, reporting, and create multimedia/interactive content. Selected applicants receive funds and advice from mentors.
February 1 – 15, 2017: Projects are published and/or broadcasted.
February 15, 2017: Last day to submit published and/or broadcasted stories. Final financial reports are due.

What kind of story projects are we looking for?

Applicants can pitch story projects ranging from one woman’s story to nationwide trends on the issue. Applicants can focus their project on any geographical area in the United States.

What makes a successful application?

Successful applicants will take a fresh look at the role minority women play in business across the United States. They will use graphics, social media, web interactives, new technology (such as 360 video) or other innovative tools to bring more media attention to minority women business owners.

What costs do the funds cover?

The funds are meant to cover costs associated with your story project. This includes all costs incurred in designing, developing and implementing your project. The applicant can use funds to cover the costs of designers and tech support, as needed. The funds do not cover salary or honorarium for the applicant. The applicant must submit a detailed budget. Budgets must be realistic and reasonable. Successful applicants will have to submit a final financial report at the end of the reporting period.

Interested journalists can apply here.


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