Report for America, and its new sister program, Report for the World, will grow to new heights in 2022 thanks to a partnership with Google News Initiative.
Support from Google News Initiative — including a grant and global training resources — will help expand the programs’ footprint in Brazil, India, and Nigeria, while also supporting over 200 newsrooms across the U.S. to increase their sustainability through local philanthropy.
“Google News Initiative has created a powerful sustainability framework for digital news worldwide, and Report for America has become a leader in growing local news philanthropy. Together through this new partnership, we can offer a surge of training and financial support to a global network of partners, both here in the U.S. and abroad,” said Susan Leath, Chief Operating Officer for The GroundTruth Project, home to Report for America and Report for the World.
“Google helped launch Report for America in 2017, so we are beyond excited to increase reporting and business capacity at news organizations in North America, and across the world,” said Ben Monnie, Director of GNI Programs and News Partnerships at Google. “This partnership is core to Google’s mission of enabling a healthy, sustainable future for journalism.”
Report for America goes global
The GroundTruth Project launched Report for the World this spring in response to growing demand from local news outlets abroad with support from the MacArthur Foundation. The program builds upon GroundTruth’s track record of award-winning global reporting and Report for America’s successful sustainability and talent matching model.
Since its launch, Report for the World has grown to support six newsroom partners across three countries, with local reporters taking on undercovered topics from climate change and gender, to equity, education and the pandemic.
Support from Google will enable Report for the World to build the critical infrastructure needed to move from pilot to scale, including hiring the program’s first-ever Global Director as well as a Global Sustainability Coach.
In the new year, Report for the World will open its first-ever global call for newsroom applications, expanding the program beyond its initial geographic footprint.
Increasing sustainability through local philanthropy
Google’s support will also help Report for America offer local sustainability coaching and training to some 270 local newsrooms in its network.
Report for America leverages an innovative funding match model, paying half of a corps member’s salary, while coaching its local news organization partners to raise the other half from local supporters.
Last year, Report for America partner newsrooms raised over $5 million from more than 10,000 local donors across the country this way, including community foundations, corporate giving, high net-worth individuals, grassroots donors, and more.
“Google’s new support to Report for America at this stage in our growth is particularly special as Google was one of Report for America’s first-ever funders, catalyzing the launch of the program in 2017,” said Steve Waldman, co-founder and president of Report for America. “Since then, the program has grown and will support 325 local reporters in newsrooms across 50 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.”
Leveraging the Google News Initiative Network
Google will offer a range of world-class support to Report for the World newsrooms in the form of training, workshops and playbooks, with an emphasis on financial sustainability. Resources will be pulled from Google’s News Consumer Insights suite, the GNI Digital Growth Program, and News Lab training curriculum for reporters and editors. The 7,000 news organizations that the GNI has supported around the world will also be encouraged to apply to join Report for the World.
“Google and Report for the World share an emphasis on supporting service-minded, independent, digital news organizations because we know that when the next generation of local newsrooms thrive, our democracies and our communities thrive,” said GroundTruth Co-founder and Chief Content Officer Kevin Grant.
About Report for America and Report for the World
Report for America is a national service program that places talented emerging journalists in local newsrooms to report on under-covered topics and communities. Launched in 2017 by the nonprofit The GroundTruth Project, Report for America is a new, sustainable model that provides Americans with the information they need to improve their communities and hold powerful institutions accountable.
Its sister program Report for the World, also an initiative of GroundTruth, is an international journalism program that matches local newsrooms with talented journalists to report on under-covered issues around the globe. It launched in February 2021 in India and Nigeria, placing its first-ever cohort of corps members in May 2021 and expanding to Brazil in September 2021.
About Google News Initiative
The Google News Initiative represents Google’s effort to help journalism thrive in the digital age. Through its partnerships, programs and products, the Google News Initiative works with thousands of organizations worldwide to support quality independent journalism, financial sustainability, and development of new technologies that drive innovation.