Fledgling has an open rolling application process for grants to support outreach and engagement for social issue documentary film projects that have the potential to inspire positive social change around issues that affect the most vulnerable.
You can submit an application online at any time and will be asked to include a description of the project, its social change goals and your plans for moving the project forward. Typically, film projects have at least a rough cut. We review proposals on a rolling basis and you will be notified of our decision within three months.
Grants typically range from $10K – $25K. We support audience engagement planning and implementation. Support for planning is for building the strategy for outreach and engagement and can be used before a project is complete to prepare for its launch. Grants are NOT available to support production or post-production.
THE STORY Fledgling sees storytelling as a lever to improve the lives of the most vulnerable. We know that a strong filmmaking vision and a beautifully crafted film are essential. We look for compelling, authentic, important and timely stories that are character driven and/or add a new perspective or new information to a critical social issue. We seek projects that have unique power to inspire, educate and mobilize audiences.
STAGE OF PROJECT We understand that audience engagement planning and implementation can happen at any point in the life of a project. However, before committing funds, we need to understand how the story develops and whether it can carry the project’s outreach and engagement goals. Typically, film projects have at least at a rough cut that we can review. All projects should have a clear timeline for completion.
ISSUE AREA We recognize that many of our most pressing issues are multi-faceted and systemic. It is difficult to think about improving public health without considering food systems, toxins in our environment, housing, and access to acute, chronic and preventive health care services. Likewise, to empower young girls and provide opportunities for women to lead, we must consider education, reproductive health, economic justice and the impact of sexual and domestic violence. Addressing climate change requires attention to corporate accountability, energy extraction, consumerism and strengthening and empowering local communities. Similar arguments can be made around prison reform, democracy and economic justice. Given this complexity, we seek stories around a range of issues, but give priority to projects that seek to improve the conditions for the most vulnerable.
PROPOSAL STRENGTH We do not expect applicants to have a fully developed audience engagement strategy. In fact, applicants may request funds to do just that. However, we are looking for proposals that demonstrate a commitment to social change, have clear and realistic goals, recognize the need for partners, and identify some ideas for how the project can contribute to social change around important issues.
The online application is open to projects that have not previously received support from Fledgling as well as current grantees. We welcome applicants and projects from both inside and outside of the United States. However, before receiving a grant, all applicants must have a fiscal sponsor based in the United States. This does NOT need to be in place for you to submit the application, but it must be in place for the funds to be disbursed.