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How to Apply to the 2022 Impact Funds

How to Apply: 

All applications must be filed through an online application.  Applicants for the California Impact Fund should apply at this link: online application.  Applications to the Impact Fund for Reporting on Health Systems and Health Equity should file this applications at this link. We suggest that you begin preparing your application in Word or another text-based format so that you can cut and paste the components into the online application.

 The application asks for the following:

  • A  statement of purpose
  • A project proposal
  • A statement of impact
  • A statement of deliverables (CA applications should include this in the project proposal)
  • A proposed budget
  • Three samples of professional work
  • A current resumé
  • A letter of reference
  • An Editor's Checklist signed by a supervising editor and confirming the media outlet's intent to publish or broadcast the project

Applicants must join and post a profile and photo.

Deadline:  November 30, 2021

Personal Statement: Use 500 words to tell us who you are. Describe your general reporting or editing experience and aspirations, as well as your health reporting or editing experience, including the types of health care stories you currently cover or edit. Include a description of your publication, broadcast outlet or website, including the size, nature and geographic reach of its audience and how it's measured. (For websites, we require Google analytics or an equivalent.) If two or more reporters are applying as a team or two or more editors are proposing a cross-outlet collaboration, a single application may be filed, but it should include details about each of the journalists who will be involved, including their names,  affiliations, short bios, and resumes  and the size, nature and geographic reach of each of the participating outlets’ audiences. Describe your and/or your team’s general reporting or editing experience and aspirations, as well as your and/or your team’s health reporting or editing experience, including the types of stories you and/or your team currently cover or edit.

Project Proposal

In no more than 1,000 words, summarize a major reporting project. Consult our webpage for examples of topics we are interested in funding. Summarize likely themes, multimedia components and any social media and audience/community engagement strategies you anticipate (strongly encouraged), such as community forums, interactive digital features, partnerships with other media outlets or community organizations and so on. Tell us what sources or datasets you anticipate using or that you'll be looking for. Your proposal should be well-researched and should demonstrate that you have done some deep thinking about the relevance of the topic to your community. Be specific about deliverables (e.g. a three-part multimedia series, three seven-minute radio pieces, a 60-minute TV documentary and so on).  Think big.

Statement of Impact (up to 250 words)

Tell us why your proposed project is important and whether it will break new ground. Explain why this project is needed now and what impact a project like this might have. Include information on how this builds on or distinguishes itself from other journalism on this topic. 

Statement of Deliverables (up to 250 words)

Describe the scope of your project -- how many stories of how many words? Graphics? Photos? Videos? Podcast? 

Proposed Budget (up to 250 words)

The maximum grant is $10,000; grants of this size will most likely go to multi-newsroom collaborations.  Specify the size of the grant you’re seeking, and justify it. The size of the requested grant should be commensurate with the scope of the proposed project. Grants are meant to cover out-of-pocket expenses such as travel, dataset acquisition, translation services and multimedia components that your newsroom is not equipped to provide itself (e.g. videography and data visualization). In exceptional cases, we will permit part of each grant to be used to compensate for otherwise uncompensated time. If you’re a freelancer, the media outlet that agrees to publish or broadcast your project should be expected to provide the bulk of your compensation.

Three Samples of Your Work: Submit three samples of your best work. (For work that has only appeared online, please provide working URLs, as well as Word documents or PDFs of the published stories.) Broadcasters should submit links to working URLs of their online stories or CDs/DVDs. If you are an editor, submit work that you supervised and edited, along with an explanation of your role in shaping the content. If you write in a language other than English or Spanish, we prefer to receive translations of your work. If that is not possible, send a comprehensive two-paragraph summary in English of each story. 

Resumé: Please include a current resumé. Note:  Any misrepresentation that is discovered after you are admitted to the Fellowship will result in your dismissal.

Letter of Reference: Please supply a letter of reference from your assigning editor, producer, or news director that discusses your abilities and potential as a journalist in detail and the newsroom's support for your project

Editor/Story Checklist (download pdf):  Download it, complete it, get your assigning editor's signature on it, and scan it into your computer to submit with your online application or FAX it to us at (877) 413-3873. Both freelance and employed journalists must submit written confirmation of a news organization's commitment to publish or air the work resulting from the grant, assuming it meets its standards. If several newsrooms are proposing a collaborative project, an editor from each outlet must sign an Editor/Story Checklist.

How We Select Grantees:

When choosing grantees, we consider each candidate's personal and professional accomplishments and potential, as well as the potential contribution of his or her proposed  project on the public's understanding of health issues. We value diversity in both our grantees and their media outlets. We encourage applications from candidates who serve non-English speaking audiences. The Center will only review complete applications submitted by the deadline.

Tips for Maximizing Your Chances of Being Selected

  • Think big journalistically. 
  • Provide lots of details about what we can expect from your project.  Provides specifics, such as likely story count and multimedia components. We want to know what will result from our investment in you.
  • We're looking for impact, so tell us what problem your project will expose and what might happen as a result of increased awareness by the public and policymakers.
  • Tell us how you will engage the community with your project.  It's not sufficient any more to just put something out there.  Tell us how you will involve the public both in helping shape your journalism and responding to it.


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