Grantee Profile


Grants to WITNESS

  • $500,000

    2016 (Duration 2 years)

    Journalism & Media

    BROOKLYN, NEW YORK — WITNESS is a nonprofit based in New York City that trains and supports activists and citizens around the world to use video and social media to expose human rights abuses and seek social change. In the United States WITNESS is launching efforts to equip organizations and individuals to use video and social media better to address a range of contemporary civil rights issues, including police violence, racial justice, and LGBTQ rights. This grant provides support for WITNESS to strengthen the capacity of key actors working on these issue areas, including leading service organizations, at-risk populations, emerging leaders and activists within movements, and ordinary citizens to use video more effectively and safely to collect evidence, spark policy debates, and challenge mainstream media accounts or official narratives. 

  • $450,000

    2015 (Duration 3 years)

    Human Rights

    BROOKLYN, NEW YORK — WITNESS helps enable human rights defenders to use video to expose the truth and create change. With long-standing expertise at the intersection of human rights, media, and technology, WITNESS has a unique vantage point on the breadth of opportunities and challenges facing the video-for-change movement. The award supports the organization’s technology advocacy work, which has two areas of focus. First, WITNESS influences leading technology companies to ensure the policies and code they write advances safety, privacy, and freedom of expression, while also improving the potential for their products and platforms to improve human rights monitoring and documentation. Second, WITNESS advances the development of specific technologies that improve the collection of human rights evidence captured through video.

  • $300,000

    2013 (Inactive Grant)

    Human Rights

    BROOKLYN, NEW YORK — WITNESS partners with human rights advocates around the globe to use the power of video and storytelling in order to expose human rights abuses and advance justice for crimes that are committed. The grant supports the organization’s Camera’s Everywhere program that is creating new tools that aid in documenting and preserving video evidence of human rights abuses, and advocating for leading technology companies to implement policies and practices that create a more enabling environment for human rights work in the digital world, particularly as it relates to gathering and documenting video evidence.

The MacArthur Foundation awarded WITNESS $1,250,000 between 1978 and 2018.

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