Fiscal sponsorship allows individuals to solicit charitable donations under the umbrella of the Southern Documentary Fund's (SDF) 501(c)(3) non-profit status. Many foundations require that you have a fiscal sponsor to be eligible for most grants. As your fiscal sponsor, SDF becomes the non-profit tax-exempt organization that allows you to receive contributions from individuals, foundations, corporations, and government agencies that may not otherwise be available to you. Cash donations received on behalf of your project are tax-deductible for the donor. SDF does not award grants or do research for individual project funding. Fiscal sponsorship with SDF does not mean that we are your producers, fundraisers, or in any way connected to the content or actual production of your project.I am currently working on a documentary. Does SDF grant money to documentary projects?
No. SDF is not a granting organization. We do not accept grant proposals. SDF is a non-profit tax-exempt organization that serves as a fiscal sponsor to over 45 Works-In-Progress and 20 Completed Projects. Fiscal sponsorship allows you to solicit contributions from individuals, foundations, corporations, and government agencies that might not otherwise be available to you as an individual.At what stage of production can I apply for fiscal sponsorship?
You can apply for fiscal sponsorship with SDF at any phase: pre-production, production, or post-production. Project Directors have also used SDF as a sponsor for distribution grants or to accept donations to do outreach and related community engagement projects.I don't live in the South. Can I still apply with SDF?
SDF sponsors projects by directors who are living in the South and/or directors, living anywhere in the country or around the world, who are telling stories about or related to the South. You do not need to live in the South to apply for Fiscal Sponsorship with SDF, but your project must be related to our Mission to tell stories about the American South.Do you sponsor experimental projects, shorts or feature films?
Yes. Many of our projects are feature length, but we encourage artists from all genres and with projects of varying lengths to apply for sponsorship.When does SDF accept applications for fiscal sponsorship?
SDF accepts applications on a quarterly basis. The deadlines are: January 15, April 15, July 15, and October 15.Can you review my application between deadlines?
SDF will not accept applications between deadlines. Our New Projects Committee meets quarterly (January, April, July, and October). If you have an immediate need and require advice about what to do, please call 919-308-3714.Where do I send my application materials?
We accept applications four times per year January 15, April 15, July 15, and October 15. Applications must be in hand by 5 pm on the deadline date. All application packages should be addressed as follows:
Southern Documentary Fund
762 Ninth St #574
Durham, NC 27705
SDF will not accept incomplete or late submissions. SDF does not return submission materials. If you would like your materials returned once a fiscal sponsorship decision has been made you must send a SASE with your application packet.
Click here for more info on the application process.I've submitted my application for fiscal sponsorship. When will I hear something?
The New Projects Committee meets shortly after the deadline passes and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors. The Board votes on all recommendations within one month of the application deadline. All applicants will be notified either via letter or email within one month of the deadline.My proposal was rejected. Do you offer feedback or advice on my proposal?
Yes. Your letter of denial has comments from the Committee that will advise you on the revision points to address in the proposal. If you need additional feedback you can contact us (919-308-3714) to request a phone consultation with a New Projects Committee member.If my proposal is denied, can I resubmit it at a later date?
Project directors who are denied can resubmit if the Committee offers you the opportunity. In this case, you may resubmit your application, without an additional fee, for the next deadline. Resubmissions are only required to include the revised proposal, budget, and application. You do not see to resend work samples or optional materials unless these materials have been updated. Proposals that are not resubmitted within one deadline cycle will be considered a new application and will need to send the full application packet, including the application fee.