The Documentary
Impact Producer
Relief Fund

The Documentary Impact Producer Relief Fund will provide grants of up to $4,000 to help alleviate the acute hardships faced by freelance impact producers working anywhere in the world in this time of economic uncertainty. Freelance and sole-proprietor impact producers, especially those from under resourced and underrepresented groups, are uniquely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic which has exacerbated the spectrum of historic inequalities they face. While emergency relief resources alone cannot address long-term career stability, the intent of this fund is to ensure impact producers, who we believe are vital to the documentary ecosystem, remain financially stable enough to continue this important work.

Who is behind the fund?

The Documentary Impact Producer Relief Fund and application process has been designed by the Global Impact Producers facilitators: Beadie Finzi (UK); Emily Wanja (Kenya); Jamie Dobie (US); Jess Search (UK); Molly Murphy (US); Sonya Childress (US); Vanessa Cuervo Forero (Colombia).

The fund is being administered by Doc Society with support from Perspective Fund. As a group we are committed to equity, inclusion and respect in the development and administration of the fund. We have sought advice and best practices from colleagues in the delivery of the Relief Fund but if you have suggestions about how we could improve our process, please let us know.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for this fund, you must be able to say TRUE to the following statements

  • I am a practising freelance Impact Producer able to demonstrate commitment to my work with at least one impact or outreach credit to my name in the last 12 months. (Please see below for Impact Producer, defined).
  • I am experiencing financial emergencies due to or exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • I am 21 years or older.
  • I have not previously been awarded a relief grant from this fund.
  • I can accept an electronic bank transfer and provide bank details if I am selected for funding.
  • If based in the US, I can provide an SSN or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.
  • I am not a full time employee, board member, director, officer or immediate family member of any of the funding organisations or Global Impact Producers steering committee. Those associated directly with the fund are not eligible.

What, or Who, is an Impact Producer? Am I an Impact Producer?

The Impact Producer is responsible for maximizing a film’s potential for social change. Responsibilities may vary based on the film’s content and defined distribution goals, but often include strategy development, issue mapping, brain trust facilitation, organizational partnership development and management, digital content production and engagement, and impact evaluation and measurement. An Impact Producer may also coordinate and/or oversee a film’s semi-theatrical screening campaign and release. The Impact Producer may also play a role in story development and fundraising, beginning as early as pre-production.

You may have performed some of the roles above but with a different job title. Tell us about that when you apply. Some filmmakers are also the Impact Producer on their own films, designing and delivering campaigns separate from the film’s distribution, but without taking that additional credit. We see you. If you are such a filmmaker, and have not been eligible for other relief programmes designed for filmmakers, you may apply here.

How much funding is available?

The relief is global and a total of $600,000 is available for disbursement. Working from the baseline of $4,000 USD, each eligible applicant will receive an amount that is standardised for each city in the world by a cost of living index. For example: New York City will be used as the baseline, with one of the highest cost of living in the world and an index rating of 100. Grants there will be at $4,000. Nairobi has an index of 39.68. Grants there will be $1,587.

Please Note: disaster relief and emergency aid payments may not be taxable under the law that applies to you. Consult your local law to determine your tax implications.

How long will the fund be open for?

There will be three funding rounds:

There will be three funding rounds:

Round 1: Open June 3rd - June 8th
We were able to offer support to 132 colleagues from 27 countries including:
Argentina * Australia * Austria * Brazil * Canada * Chile * Colombia * Congo * Denmark * El Salvador * Ethiopia * France * India * Kenya * Mexico * Moldova * Nepal * Nigeria * New Zealand * Pakistan * Portugal * Russia * South Africa * Tunisia * United Kingdom * United States

Round 2: Open July 10th – July 17th

Round 3: Open August 12th – August 19th

How will the recipients be chosen?

This is a non-competitive process. The funds are not being given out on a first-come first-served basis, so don’t rush your application. At the close of each application period, all eligible applications will be entered into a pool and adjusted as needed to ensure fair representation from particularly vulnerable communities. The applications will then be randomized and processed.

How quickly will I be notified of decisions? And how quickly will I receive the funds?

We are working as quickly as we can to respond to all applications. Given the volume of applications we anticipate, it may take up to two weeks to process your application, from the close of the cycle. If you are approved, we endeavour to get you the funds within 14 days of our receipt of your bank details and SSN/ ITIN, where applicable. If you are not approved, you will be notified and encouraged to reapply the following round.

If I don’t receive funds in the first round, do I have to apply again?

At the end of each cycle, applicants who did not receive funding will be notified and encouraged to reapply the following round. This system allows us to monitor our capacity as well as maximize each applicant’s opportunity to receive a grant. Additionally, reapplying each cycle allows impact producers to rearticulate their needs as their circumstances change during this pandemic.

Will my application be confidential?

We will limit the disclosure of your personal information to the Global Impact Producers steering committee and those at the Fund who have a need to know, and only as necessary to administer the program. Your demographic information is optional and collected solely for fund administration and program reporting purposes.

Can I read the application before applying?

Yes! You can download a copy of the questions in advance here. There is also additional information available on the Guidance page.

Ready to apply?

The second round of the fund will be open from 9am GMT July 10th – 5pm GMT July 17th.