To bring awareness to the crisis of Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, Two-Spirit and Transgender people (MMIWG2T), the Howard G. Buffett Foundation has given the IWMF a $750,000 grant to establish a three-year fund supporting U.S.-based reporting projects by Indigenous journalists on the issue.
“The crisis of MMIW [Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women] is the culmination of a spectrum of violence perpetrated disproportionately against Indigenous women—it reflects the intersection of domestic violence, sexual assault, trafficking, and many other crimes. These crimes occur due to a long history of government policies, programs, and laws that create conditions that leave Indigenous women more vulnerable to such crimes than other women.” – National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center
The Fund for Indigenous Journalists: Reporting on Missing & Murdered Women, Girls, Two-Spirit, Transgender People (MMIWG2T) directly supports Indigenous journalists’ reporting on violence that targets members of Indigenous nations, both on sovereign ground and in urban settings in the U.S. The dominant media narrative around Indigenous issues, including of Missing & Murdered Indigenous People (MMIP), is often criticized by Indigenous journalists as perpetuating stereotypes and lacking critical nuance – victimizing Indigenous people and ignoring their survivorship. Meanwhile, Indigenous people make up less than one percent of working journalists in the U.S. and have little access to major media outlets to tell their own stories to national audiences.
Starting in March 2022, applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis by an advisory committee comprised of distinguished Indigenous practicing journalists and editors, along with Indigenous thought leaders. The IWMF is conducting ongoing, targeted outreach to eligible journalists and Indigenous journalism groups to solicit proposals. Indigenous journalists affiliated with media outlets, as well as freelancers, are invited to apply.
In addition to monetary support, the IWMF is committed to providing editorial and pitching support to grantees.
Cover photo by Donovan Quintero (Diné)