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Ella Sagar 

Meta invests a further £5.9m in community news project

Meta invests a further £5.9m in community news project

Meta is continuing funding of its journalism training project to encourage more diverse and regional journalists to join local newsrooms in the UK.

The Community News Project (CNP) was started in 2018 with $9m investment over three years, and Meta announced today it will invest another $8m (£5.9m) over two years to increase its available places on the initiative from 82 to 100 and bring more publishers into the fold.

Meta said 139 reporters had been recruited to the scheme in the UK since it started in 2018 in partnership with the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) and nine publisher groups across the UK.

The social media giant also highlighted that around two-thirds of these reporters hired in the initial program "met one or more of the measured diversity criteria" and are serving under-represented communities.

The CNP forms part of The Meta Journalism Project which works with local news publishers globally. Journalists from this scheme are credited with contributing to hundreds of front pages in the UK with 80% achieving front-page bylines in print or homepage leads online within three months of starting in their role.

Joanne Butcher, chief executive of the National Council for the Training of Journalists said: "The [CNP] results speak for themselves: an increase in the number and diversity of trainees joining newsrooms, who are increasing coverage of their communities while becoming professionally qualified journalists.

"News of Meta’s longer-term commitment and even greater investment in the project comes as a real boost after such a challenging time. The nine publishers deserve great credit too for making the project a big success so that it can benefit even more publishers in the future."

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