The Reham al-Farra Memorial Journalism (RAF) Fellowship is an opportunity for young journalists from countries with developing economies and economies in transition to cover the United Nations. Hosted every fall at UN headquarters, the programme brings a select group of journalists to New York for the opening of the General Assembly.
During their time at headquarters, fellows have an opportunity to observe the UN in action, interview senior officials and exchange ideas with colleagues from around the world. In previous years, fellows have met with the UN Secretary-General, President of the General Assembly and permanent representatives to the United Nations. The programme also arranges visits to various news organizations, such as the New York Times, the Associated Press, and WNYC radio.
Since its founding in 1981, the fellowship has been awarded to 566 journalists from 168 countries.
The programme runs for approximately three weeks. Fellowship awards cover the cost of roundtrip airfare to New York and provide a daily subsistence allowance (DSA) to cover accommodation and related expenses.
Information on eligibility can be found here.
The RAF fellowship is sponsored by the UN Department of Public Information.
The programme is an opportunity for junior and mid-level journalists from developing countries and countries with economies in transition to gain firsthand experience in the work of the United Nations and to exchange ideas with colleageus from around the world.
The fellowship does not provide basic skills training, as all fellows must be full-time journalists. Fellows are expected to file stories independently during their time at Headquarters. The United Nations provides production assistance, but exerts no editorial authority over the work fellows publish. The fellowship does not lead to employment by the United Nations.
Reham Al-Farra was a 29-year-old Jordanian public information officer who was killed in the August 19, 2003 bombing of UN Headquarters in Baghdad. Ms. Al-Farra was in baghdad on assignment with the Office of the Spokesperson for the Special Representative.
Before joining the United Nations nine months earlier, Ms. al-Farra was the first female daily political columnist writing for Al Arab Al Yawm. She was also actively involved with the Centre for Defending Freedom of Journalists.
In September 2003, the UN Department of Public Information renamed its annual training programme for young journalists in her honour.
– UN news release, posted by Pat Perkel
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