The Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF) has launched Amplify South Africa, a mentoring, capacity strengthening and grant funding program to help independent media organisations build their revenues, audiences and innovation.

The objectives of Amplify South Africa are to diversify, strengthen and support innovation among independent media initiatives in South Africa, through a combination of grants, coaching and expert technical assistance. 

The application window is open until midnight (SAST) on March 16, 2024, offering independent media organisations based in South Africa the chance to be part of a transformative initiative that could reshape the future of their organisations. Amplify South Africa invites existing independent media companies and non-profit organisations, as well as new ventures that are less than a year old, to submit their applications to join the programme. 

Deadline for submissions: 16 March 2024, midnight (SAST)


What is Amplify South Africa?


Amplify South Africa is a mentoring, capacity strengthening and grant funding program to support independent media businesses to strengthen their revenues, audiences, and innovation. 

Amplify South Africa will support growth and experimentation with new business models through a tailored program of bespoke coaching, workshops, and other training, coupled with grant funding.  

Over a 2-year period, the cohort will develop the tools and skills needed to experiment with different revenue and audience generation opportunities, and testing new business models, that will contribute to their future sustainability and independence. Amplify South Africa encourages collaboration and the cohort will also have opportunities to participate in spaces created for co-learning and knowledge exchange. 


Who can join?


Amplify South Africa is interested in supporting independent media in South Africa, ranging from early stage, small scale to more established organizations serving both urban and rural audiences. Amplify South Africa is looking for innovative media initiatives/projects that aim to address issues impacting the organisation’s sustainability and independence.

Eligibility Criteria:


  • Applicants must be independent media outlets based in South Africa,
  • Applicants must be supportive of democratic practices and institutions, political pluralism, transparency, human rights, dignity and equal rights for all, regardless of race, ethnic or social origin, gender, sex, sexual orientation, disability, religion, culture or language.
  • Applicants should have a particular business and/or revenue and/or transformation project they are planning to work on over the next 12-24 months (or early in the stages of an existing project) addressing one or more of the following focus areas:
  • New revenue opportunities: Innovative solutions to revenue challenges that media companies face – opening up new revenue streams to make media organisations more sustainable and independent.
  • Digital native products: New approaches to collecting news and information, and to reporting, storytelling and distribution, that embrace the possibilities of technology and contribute to the viability of news operations.
  • Reaching communities in rural/underserved areas: Innovative approaches to reach and empower people generally underserved by existing news media.
  • Innovation in distribution: Media technology and tools that help to distribute local and relevant news in a cost-effective and sustainable way.
  • Transition to digital: Finding and implementing solutions, products or processes that assist legacy media to transform their businesses.
  • Applicants must be willing to commit sufficient time to work with coaches/mentors and carry out assigned tasks.


Targeted grants to support sustainability


In addition to bespoke coaching, workshops and other expert technical training, Amplify South Africa will also give participating organisations access to grant funding to grow audience, improve revenue generation and sustainability.

  • Grants awarded to the media organisations will vary in size, but the range is typically between $5,000 to $25,000 per year.
  • Grants are determined according to the business and/or revenue and/or transformation project that the organization wants to undertake.


How to apply


Submit your application to Amplify South Africa here.

Amplify South Africa will be hosting two live community calls for potential applicants who would like to know more about the programme and the application process. If you would like to join one of these calls, please register below:

  • February 21, 2024 10:00 – 11:30 SAST. Register in advance here
  • March 1, 2024 15:00 – 16:30 SAST. Register in advance here


Find out more about the programme, how to apply and Frequently Asked Questions here.  If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out! Email Amplify South Africa at amplifysa@mdif.org

Deadline for submissions: 16 March 2024, midnight (SAST)