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Funding drive kicks off as nonprofit newsrooms take root across America

November 1, 2022

NewsMatch, the catalytic, collaborative funding program driving the growth of nonprofit news startups nationwide, kicks off today, with a matching pool of $5.75 million that news organizations hope to leverage to raise close to $50 million from local businesses, philanthropies, and individual donors.

The nonprofit, public-service model for journalism is taking root across the United States, with 320 newsrooms participating in NewsMatch 2022 – the largest number ever – up from 195 in 2019 before the pandemic, when journalists launched a wave of digital news startups. About one-fifth of the organizations in NewsMatch are startups, having been founded since 2020. Local outlets represent more than two-thirds of the participants across 45 states and Washington, DC. An increasing number of nonprofit newsrooms prioritize serving communities of color, rural areas and other communities that have long been ignored or misrepresented by the press. All NewsMatch participants are members of the INN Network – hundreds of nonprofit, nonpartisan newsrooms dedicated to public service.

Over the past several years, the base of support for nonprofit news has broadened dramatically, from a single, national foundation providing matching funds when NewsMatch was founded in 2016 to 17 contributors* to the NewsMatch fund in 2022* and more than 1,000 organizations investing matching funds at the local level last year.

“It’s exciting to see so many regional funders and businesses participating in NewsMatch,” said Joshua Stearns, senior director of the Public Square Program at Democracy Fund, which has funded NewsMatch since 2017. “The erosion of local news touches every part of our society, and NewsMatch is becoming a platform for people all across our nation to contribute to the solution. When you grow local news, you accelerate positive change in your communities.”

Showing the value communities place on trustworthy news, hundreds of thousands of people give to nonprofit newsrooms during NewsMatch, which runs November-December each year and provides funds from the matching pool to amplify individual donations.

MinnPost Reporter Greta Kaul talks with an attendee after moderating an interview with a local politician. MinnPost is one of 320 newsrooms participating in NewsMatch 2022. Photo by Annabelle Marcovici for MinnPost

Members of the INN Network employ around 3,000 journalists across North America. Nearly all without paywalls or subscription fees, INN Network members cover everything from small-town school boards to global climate change, providing essential news and information to millions of news consumers, not just those who can afford it. 

The impact of nonprofit news is becoming more and more evident. More than 2,000 American newspapers have closed over the past 15 years, including more than 90 since the start of the pandemic, as advertising plummeted. Nonprofit newsrooms are filling major gaps left by the shrinking commercial industry, with local news outlets the fastest-growing segment of the field, according to the annual INN Index

To accelerate the growth of the field, the Institute for Nonprofit News provides members with business coaching, technical assistance and other resources to help them engage audiences and achieve sustainability through a combination of fundraising and earned revenue. Training and resources to help newsrooms expand their individual fundraising during NewsMatch and beyond are provided by INN and its partner News Revenue Hub.


NewsMatch is a fiscally sponsored project of The Miami Foundation. Donations to the NewsMatch fund can be made online

* Funders contributing this year include John S. and James L. Knight Foundation; Loud Hound; Democracy Fund; Heising-Simons Foundation; Inasmuch Foundation; Independence Public Media Foundation; Jonathan Logan Family Foundation; Joyce Foundation; Kaphan Foundation; Maida Lynn; The New York Times; Present Progressive Fund at Schwab Charitable; Solidarity Giving; William and Flora Hewlett Foundation; Walton Family Foundation; Wyncote Foundation; and Dirk and Natasha Ziff.

To find a newsroom covering a particular geographic area or topic of interest, visit

The Institute for Nonprofit News strengthens and supports more than 400 independent news organizations in a new kind of news network: nonprofit, nonpartisan and dedicated to public service. From local news to in-depth reporting on pressing global issues, members of the INN Network tell stories that otherwise would go untold – connecting communities, holding the powerful accountable and strengthening democracy. INN programs help these news organizations develop revenue and business models to support strong reporting, collaborate on editorial and business innovation, share services and advance the diverse leaders who are forging a new future for news.

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