IWMF Howard G. Buffet Fund for Women Journalists

Deadline: 23 March 2015
Open to: women journalists with three or more years of professional experience
Grants: $230,000 will be dispersed each year (grant sizes will depend on the projects or skills building opportunities, and the inclusion of a detailed budget)


The Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists of the International Women’s Media Foundation provides the financial support for women journalists to pursue opportunities that will make them leaders in the news industry. Flexible grant amounts will support a wide range of innovative, original, and collaborative news media projects, and to strengthen the skills of women journalists worldwide. The IWMF believes in the importance of women’s voices in providing high-quality information in the public interest, and they advocate for the advancement of women in the global media. Howard G. Buffett is a longtime supporter of the IWMF’s work. The Fund was developed in the spirit of his support for 2005 IWMF Courage in Journalism Award Winner Anja Niedringhaus (1965-2014).

A Fund selection committee will evaluate for support based on a number of criteria, including a commitment to diversity and innovation. There will be two broad categories of funding: grants for media projects and grants for skills building.

The Fund’s goals are to:

  • Advance women in the news media worldwide by funding innovative projects and unique opportunities ;
  • To help journalists build skills critical to their development as professionals;
  • Encourage journalists working in hostile environments to obtain necessary security training;
  • Support projects from a diverse pool of applicants;
  • Offer flexibility in funding amounts and projects;
  • Urge applicants to pitch ambitious ideas;
  •  Inspire original collaborative projects;
  • Provide opportunities for journalists with limited access to other funding sources.

Media projects supported by the Fund may include (but are not limited to): investigative reporting, books, documentaries, radio programs, media development initiatives, and reporting assignments. Both ongoing and new projects are eligible to apply. Skills-building opportunities include: fellowships, security training, conferences, and workshops. All must include a detailed preliminary budget.

The Fund will not provide money to cover tuition expenses for undergraduate or graduate degree programs. Requests for assistance with equipment needs will also not be considered.


  • Women journalists from anywhere in the world are eligible to apply;
  • Journalism must be the applicant’s primary profession;
  • Applicants must have three or more years of professional journalism experience;
  • Teams of journalists may apply, however the submission must be from a woman journalist and her team must include at least 50% women;
  • Special consideration will be given to freelance journalists.


Approximately $230,000 will be dispersed each year. Grant sizes will depend on the projects or skills building opportunities in question, and the inclusion of a detailed budget. The organization anticipates that grants will be disbursed in May, July, September and November each year, starting in May 2015 (the number of rounds per year depends on the amount of funding dispersed in prior rounds). These dates are approximate and timelines for application review and grant distribution will shift depending on how much money is given away each quarter. The application process will close prior to each review cycle, and a full submission timeline will be available on the IWMF’s website in March.


Applicants must be prepared to provide the following information (in English):

  • Contact Information;
  • Brief description of the project or opportunity you are seeking funding for;
  • If applicable, a list of any other team members or applicants;
  • Description of the purpose of the proposal and the issue/problem it is designed to address;
  • Estimated budget and time frame;
  • Two (2) letters of recommendation.

Each applicant creates a username and password through the online application system. The system allows applicants to log-in and save work before creating a final submission. The letters of recommendation must be submitted through the online system. IWMF will not be able to accept recommendation letters through email or traditional mail. Applicants will be provided and online link to share with recommenders to facilitate letter submission. They receive a confirmation e-mail once a completed grant proposal has been submitted. In addition, applicants and grantees retain their intellectual property rights throughout their relationship with the IWMF.

In order to start the application process click HERE. Read the application guidelines and FAQs. Note that the deadline for applications is 23 March 2015.

The official web-page.

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