Why donate to GroundUp?
We report human rights news. South Africa’s Constitution gives people the rights to housing, education, health, safety, clean water, food and dignity. Our stories show what these rights mean for people in their daily lives.
We’re widely read: Our articles are republished daily on the country’s biggest news websites: News24, TimesLive and Daily Maverick. We’re also published in newspapers like The Witness, The Herald and Daily Dispatch. Our website is visited 7,000 times daily. We get over 260,000 page views a month.
We’re national: We report from the major cities — Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town, Durban, East London, Port Elizabeth — but also small towns like Lusikisiki, Cofimvaba, Louis Trichardt, Newcastle, Port Alfred and many others.
Covering what the mainstream ignores: You’re not likely to find a story on GroundUp about what the president is doing today. You will find stories about protests, land occupations, how well or badly the social grant system is working, and the daily struggles of people living in informal settlements.
We also break big stories: Massive corruption at PRASA, how Lottery money is being misspent, the implosion of the Fisheries Department.
Reporting the law: Well-run courts, whose judgments are widely understood, are essential to realising human rights. We run regular in-depth reports on important human rights judgments. But they’re written to be understood by non-lawyers.
We hold judges to account: While we respect the judiciary, we are not in awe of judges. We expose judges who behave badly, who deliver judgments late or abuse their positions.
News in an age of commentary: Commentary is cheap. News isn’t. While we do publish some commentary, we treasure news reporting, because without it, commentary is useless. We publish well over one thousand original news articles a year.
Why no adverts or subscriptions?
We are a small newsroom dependent on donations, small and large. We focus on producing news, and we want our stories to be read everywhere by as many people as possible with minimal distraction, unencumbered by adverts and commercial interests. This is why we publish under a Creative Commons license: our articles are free to republish.
This is a viable model. We’ve been going since 2012 and we’re getting bigger and better each year. ProPublica in the United States, AmaBhungane in South Africa and The Correspondent in The Netherlands are other successful examples of donor-funded publications.
Who are our reporters?
We have a team of staff and freelance reporters. Many of them live in townships or come from informal settlements, and it is life here that they write about. They have a deep understanding of the areas they report on.
In an era of shrinking newsrooms, few opportunities exist for young reporters to receive training and support. GroundUp has an intensive editing process that produces high-quality articles for publication, but also helps our reporters to improve.
How much does it cost to run GroundUp?
News doesn't come cheap. Reporters typically spend at least four hours on a story, often much more. We have to cover their transport, telephone and internet costs. It usually takes a couple of hours and two or more people to edit and publish even the simplest article, and we’re publishing five articles a day on average. An everyday article costs R3,000 or so to publish. That’s excluding rent, insurance, computers, cameras and all the other things you need to run a newsroom. Also, we sometimes get sued or taken to the press ombudsman. Even though we almost always win, we have to spend quite a bit on legal fees.
In 2018 we spent R5.2 million. Our budget for 2019 is just over R6 million. We are very efficient at what we do.
Who funds us?
Who are we?
GroundUp is a project of Community Media Trust, a not-for-profit company with a long track record of producing educational television programmes and awareness campaigns on health and human rights. You can find out more about GroundUp’s staff here.
You can support GroundUp by making a donation directly into our account: Our account details are:
Account number: 1043085505
Branch code: 198765
Donations are tax deductible. If you require a Section 18A certificate, please request it by email: email@example.com.
You can also make a tax deductible donation to GroundUp via Community Media trust (the co-owners of GroundUp) using GivenGain.
Want to donate monthly? The easiest way to do it currently is through Givengain. Just make sure the "Make this a monthly recurring donation" option is checked on the first GivenGain screen.
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Donate using PayFast.
If you are in the US you can donate to GroundUp via the South Africa Development Fund using Network for Good. Please choose "Ground Up" in the field with the label "I want my donation to be designated toward". Donations are tax deductible.
Company Registration Details
GroundUp is managed and co-owned by Community Media Trust.
Non-profit registration: 034-718-NPO
Public benefit organisation: 930019259
VAT registration: 4440193623