L'oeil De La Photographie
© Christina Santucci

Additional Funding Opportunities Open to Photographers and Visual Artists

Christina Santucci
Christina Santucci
+May 21, 2020

As the pandemic continues to spread throughout the world and disrupt daily life, many photographers have faced prolonged financial hardship over the past few months. In order to address this need and support visual artists, several grant programs have been extended and reopened. In other cases, new funding opportunities have emerged in the last month.

Women Photograph has announced that it’s preparing for a second round of disbursals to women and non-binary photographers through its Covid-19 Emergency Grants program. The application portal will be left open until May 22, and for applicants who have already submitted their information, there is no need to reapply unless their situation has changed.

U.S. and Canadian-based photographers, who have been hospitalized due to Covid-19 and are in financial need, as well as those who have dependents who are seriously ill or injured can apply for grants from Behind the Scenes. Funding is available for basic needs, counseling and funeral assistance.

Early career artists and collectives based in New York City have the opportunity to apply for commissioning fees of up to $15,000 through an Open Call being held by The Shed in Manhattan. Applications are being accepted through May 31 from artists who have not received any other major financial support. The Open Call program aims to select, foster and present new works from all forms and media. And the Awesome Foundation, a global organization consisting of chapters around the world, gives out $1,000 grants - generally on a monthly basis - for projects including those in the arts.

For journalists, there are a number of other opportunities for funding, including one program that is providing help to those who have been furloughed. Started as a crowdfunding campaign in Washington, the Journalist Furlough Fund has since supported 145 individuals across the United States. And professional journalists who have been laid off, furloughed or had their income unexpectedly decrease can apply for interest free loans through Microloans for Journalists.

Funding is also available to support coronavirus coverage in the United States and Europe. The Fund for Investigative Journalism is offering grants to U.S. freelancers of up to $10,000 for coronavirus stories that break new ground and expose wrongdoing—such as corruption, malfeasance, or abuse of power—in the public and private sectors. Meanwhile, Reporting Democracy is offering grants between 500 and 2,500 Euros for stories documenting how the pandemic is reshaping politics and society in Central, Eastern, and Southeast Europe. The call is open to freelance and staff journalists from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania and Serbia. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, with the first review of submissions scheduled for May 15.

Expected to reopen in September, the Alexia Foundation Grants program awards two grants annually -- one to a student and the other to a professional visual journalist -- to support projects that are socially significant. And Meedan, a non-profit devoted to improving the quality and equity of online information, hopes to reopen its Check Global Covid-19 Microgrants in the coming months. Specifically aimed at supporting works in emerging economies, the program has sought to provide funding to a wide range of topics including tracking the impact of lockdowns on democracies, examining digital surveillance and violence against women related to Covid-19.

Christina Santucci
Christina Santucci
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Christina is a New York based freelance Photographer and photo editor. A longtime photojournalist, s...

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