Detroit Journalism
Engagement Fund


The purpose of the Detroit Journalism Engagement Fund is to increase the quality, outcomes and reach of journalism in the region, with an emphasis on engagement, innovation and the equitable recovery of Detroit. The Fund, through its grantmaking program, will seek to advance quality journalism while reflecting the perspectives of diverse constituencies including people of color, women and low-income communities.

The Detroit Journalism Engagement Fund was launched in March 2017 as a partnership between the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Ford Foundation, and the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan.

The Fund began as part of a larger strategy by the Knight Foundation to expand local reporting in Detroit and Southeast Michigan. It also expanded on Ford Foundation’s strategy to more effectively involve community residents in telling the story of Detroit’s future.

The Detroit Journalism Engagement Fund seeks to strengthen local coverage by supporting a mix of different projects and approaches designed to help journalists engage community residents in the reporting process. The Fund seeks to promote the digital transformation of local news organizations by supporting journalism innovation and new digital tools.

The Detroit Journalism Engagement Fund’s grantmaking program aims to advance quality journalism and reflect the perspectives of diverse constituencies including people of color, women and low-income communities.

This grantmaking program is built upon learnings from an initial scan of the Detroit Journalism Landscape.

The first round of grants was completed in December 2017 with the second round completed in December of 2018. An update on nine DJEF grantees was made available in 2019. The most recent round of grants was announced in April of 2020. You can read their stories here.

In addition, thanks to the Ford Foundation investment, the Fund is further investing in New Michigan Media and its partner organizations, which include: the Arab American News, the Jewish NewsMichigan Chronicle, the Michigan Korean Weekly, and the Latino Press.


The grant application is currently closed. Sign up for updates on the Detroit Journalism Engagement Fund.

  • November 27, 2019: Registration deadline. If you do not already have a CFSEM Fluxx grant portal profile, you must register in order to access the application. Allow five days for registration requests to be processed. Register early for maximum time to review and complete the application.
  • December 18, 2019: Application Deadline
  • February 2020: Grant decisions and award information will be shared with applicants through the Fluxx grant portal. The first payment will be made in February 2020, conditional upon receiving signed terms of grant agreement.
  • March 2020: Awards will be publicly announced.


The application process is currently closed. 

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Questions? Feel free to contact

Harmony Rhodes

Program Associate