Google News Initiative (GNI) has increased its annual donation to the NCTJ’s Journalism Diversity Fund by more than 50 per cent on 2019.
The GNI has supported the fund since 2017 as part of the tech giant’s initiative to support a thriving journalism sector in the digital age. The NCTJ has voiced its gratitude for the additional support at a time when the industry faces extraordinary challenges.
The National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) says the money will ensure the fund can continue to support the growing number of individuals from diverse backgrounds who need financial support to complete a Diploma in Journalism.
The industry training charity, NCTJ, administers the Journalism Diversity Fund (JDF), which was launched in 2005 with an annual £100k donation from NLA media access.
In the last 15 years the JDF has supported 360 people from diverse backgrounds through their NCTJ training, with the average cost of a bursary being £8,000. Speaking of the success of the programme, the NCTJ says 80 per cent of JDF alumni remain in the journalism sector.
Commenting on the Google News Initiative donation, Matt Cooke, head of partnerships and training at Google News Lab, said: “We’re pleased to support the JDF’s important work to give aspiring journalists from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to pursue a career in journalism.”
The news follows the NCTJ’s aim in February to raise the overall income of the JDF to £500k.
Head of partnerships and projects at the NCTJ, Will Gore, added: “We are hugely grateful for Google’s generosity, which is so important at a time when we are seeking to help more prospective journalists by growing the JDF.
“Seeing an existing sponsor of the fund increase its contribution is a testament to the scheme’s past success and to our vision for its future.
“At a time when the journalism sector faces extraordinary challenges, it remains vital that the profession should be open to people from a wide range of backgrounds, who can bring their varied talents and viewpoints to bear on our sector.
“As a lead sponsor of the JDF, the Google News Initiative is helping to make that possible.”
Thirteen budding journalists were recently awarded bursaries in the first funding round (of four rounds) in 2020, as the NCTJ says it saw an increase in the number of applications. All bursary recipients are paired with a professional mentor during their training and the NCTJ works with sponsoring organisations to help arrange work placement opportunities and insight days.
For more information about the Journalism Diversity Fund visit www.journalismdiversityfund.com.