Two new funds worth £1.5 million, first new investment is Kirpalani’s We The People.

The Bertha Foundation is partnering with Britdoc to join the Britdoc board of directors and also launch two new funds worth £1.5m over the next three years.

This is more positive news for Britdoc after Channel 4 recently announced it was increasing its backing of the non-profit by a third.

The announcement was made today during a financing panel at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA).

The first projects to receive support are Steve James’ The Interrupters and Soniya Kirpalani’s We The People.

Rebecca Lichtenfeld of Bertha Philanthropies (which provides advisory services to The Bertha Foundation) said, “The Bertha Foundation supports passionate individuals, strong leadership and activism to create social change. The Foundation believes in the importance of documentary film and its ability to have a positive social impact. We are proud to be partnering with Britdoc and together launching these two exciting new initiatives.”

Britdoc CEO Jess Search added: “The Bertha Foundation is a visionary organisation with a track record in supporting social justice causes through documentary film. We believe that by joining forces, we can enable documentary filmmakers globally.”

The two new funds being set up are the Bertha Britdoc Documentary Journalism Fund, for international filmmakers working “at the intersection of film and investigative journalism” working on films “that break the important stories of our time”; and the Bertha Britdoc Connect Fund, the first outreach and engagement fund available in Europe.

That Journalism fund will offer filmmakers up to £250,000 a year for three years as a mixture of grants and investments. The first project to get a production grant is We The People, which is about a miscarriage of justice against migrant workers in Dubai.

Search added: “This fund is urgently needed. Documentary is becoming an increasingly important medium for breaking stories which require long term investigation and the commitment to gather evidence and amplify voices. We The People is just such a film and we are proud to be supporting it.”

The Connect fund is £250,000 a year for three years in grants for strategic outreach campaigns to achieve real change on a local, regional or global level. That fund is working with James’ The Interrupters, about former gang members trying to stop violence on the streets of Chicago.

Lichtenfeld added: “The Interrupters represents the best of contemporary social justice filmmaking. We believe that this film can inform and improve the lives of individuals and communities and we want to help that happen.”

For details on the new funds, visit the site.