Submission and Governance Guidelines


  Fiscal Sponsorship

The EMF is fiscally responsible for all funds it receives and administers for individual projects. Therefore, it must retain discretionary oversight of these funds to insure they are used and accounted for appropriately. As a fiscal sponsor, the EMF will not attempt to influence editorial or production decisions. However, it is responsible for monitoring the progress of all projects for which it acts as fiscal sponsor.

Beneficiaries are responsible to both the grantor disbursing funds and to the EMF.


Rather than simply serving as fiscal sponsor, the EMF may by a vote of its board agree to adopt a project presented by a third party or EMF board member. Under this arrangement, the EMF assumes full financial responsibility for and legal control of the project, and has the authority to influence program-related matters.

Applications for fiscal sponsorship

Applicants must submit two printed copies of their proposal and budget to the EMF, along with a $100 non-refundable review fee. The proposal and budget must also be e-mailed to the EMF. The material submitted to the EMF for review must be very similar to that which will be sent to potential funders. Applicants should also submit copies of pertinent audio, visual, and text materials previously produced by principals of the proposed project, as well as letters of support.

Recommended Proposal Format

  • Introduction/Summary (1 page)
  • Treatment and Production plan (up to 5 pages)
  • Statement of Need/Audience/Distribution (up to 2 pages)
  • Key Personnel (in paragraph form (Include resumes with supporting materials.)
  • Production Schedule
  • Budget
  • Potential Funding Sources
  • Supporting Materials:
    • Letters of support (key participants, supporters, broadcasters, distributors)
    • Resumes
    • Press clippings about your subject or your key personnel's past work
    • Examples of previous work (Electronic files, DVDs, or Websites)
    • Promo for current project (Electronic files, DVDs, or Websites)

Board Approval

All new proposals must be reviewed by a three-member EMF screening committee. At least two committee members must vote in favor of a project in order for its proposal to be submitted to the full board.

Board members may request additional information and/or a personal interview with the Project Director(s).

Official EMF consideration of proposals may take place via mail, e-mail, fax and/or telephone, and does not require a formal meeting of the board. While a unanimous vote to approve sponsorship is desirable, a simple majority vote of the board is all that is required.

The EMF may choose not to sponsor a project for any reason(s).

Fiscal Sponsorship Agreement

Once a project is approved for sponsorship by the board, an EMF fiscal sponsorship agreement must be signed before any proposals are circulated mentioning a relationship with the EMF and before any grants are accepted. At least two members of the board must sign on behalf of the EMF.

Project Director

The Project Director is the showrunner or the legal representative of the organization that signs the fiscal sponsorship agreement with the EMF. The Project Director accepts legal and fiscal responsibility for the sponsored project and agrees to comply with the EMF’s sponsorship requirements.

The Project Director or showrunner bears primary responsibility for raising funds. The EMF may assist at its discretion.

Grant administration

Funds received by the EMF will be disbursed to the project according to EMF policy, as well as any guidelines and restrictions of the individual grant.

Disbursements will only be made to project or corporate accounts. No EMF disbursements will be made to individuals.

Due to conditions imposed by some funders, the EMF may not be able to disburse lump sums to projects. In certain cases, the EMF may need to establish a separate, interest-bearing checking account for an individual grant and pay directly the invoices for costs covered by the grant. All direct costs of such additional administration (bank fees, etc.) will be covered by the individual project, and will not come from EMF administrative fees.

The interest accrued on each project balance will be made available to the Producer through the standard requisition process.

Requisitions may be made at most once each calendar quarter. Additional requisitions will require special permission from the EMF president.

Project Reporting

Copies of progress reports submitted to EMF by each project (as specified in the sponsorship agreement) will be provided to funders along with a cover letter from the EMF president.

All reports specifically requested by funders will be submitted by the EMF based on information provided by the project.

Project directors are required to submit a project update to EMF at least once a year (for multi-year projects) and at the completion of the project.