Indie Capital Awards The Kansas City Defender $25K Grant

The Kansas City Defender awarded a $25k grant for innovative, radical, community-focused media targeting Black people and Gen Z.

KANSAS CITY, MO — Indie Capital, an Indiegraf entity, is awarding a $25k grant to The Kansas City Defender.

Indie Capital is a program that provides funding to startup news publishers across the United States and Canada that are pioneering new business models, and that have demonstrated innovative strategies and potential for growth. While The Kansas City Defender is still in our infancy, Indie Capital took a keen interest in The Defender due to our highly innovative social media tactics which bring hard news to Black people and Gen Z.

“We are happy to announce that Indie Capital recently distributed $500,000 to 13 publications that received up to $50,000 for tech and growth solutions to support them on the path to long-term sustainability. The 13 publications include publishers from the U.S. and Canada.” -Indie Capital Award Announcement

The Defender launched just last July, that’s less than a year ago. Since then, we’ve grown our online audience 150x to over 15,000 followers across platforms. Securing a major investment or grant in under 9 months is nearly unheard of in the media space.

From Our Editor

“Many funders were originally hesitant to bet on us because of our radical, unapologetic, pro-Black stances. We knew from the beginning that what we are doing is innovative and revolutionary. A lot of people didn’t (and still don’t) understand how a real news platform can exist primarily on social media. They didn’t see the value in our influence and ability to communicate with Gen Z and capture a Black audience that has forever been neglected in mainstream media outlets.”

“We have always been the underdog in the media market against white-owned media organizations with million dollar budgets like The Star, FOX4 and KSHB. One of our most viral stories I wrote that reached millions, I wrote it in the car on my android phone, I rented a camera to produce the video footage. We had virtually zero budget. That story reached more than every local media outlet combined on social media.

“This grant will help us sustain our core mission; to uplift the voices of Black people, houseless people/communities, students who face racism, and others who have been left out, lied to and lied about in white media for decades. This investment is bigger than just the money. It demonstrates that our platform and where we are taking the media space will be a force to reckoned with in the long term. We aren’t going anywhere.”

Black media is actively suppressed and Black journalism often silenced. We depend on reader support to continue our vital community work and unapologetic truth-telling journalism. Will you help us raise $15,000 by December 31?

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Right now, until December 31, we are participating in NewsMatch, a national fund that matches donations to journalism. For the first $4,000 we raise, an additional Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion fund means new monthly donations will be matched 24x and new one-time donations matched 3x. Will you pitch in?

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