Applications are open for the 2019 James W. Foley Middle East Fellowship

The GroundTruth Project is pleased to begin accepting applications for the 2019 James. W. Foley Middle East Fellowship.

This $10,000 fellowship supports a freelance journalist who is seeking to report stories in the Middle East that are under-covered by mainstream media. As part of the grant, the journalist will receive a stipend and a budget that will include relevant risk assessment and Hostile Environment and First Aid Training as well as insurance and reporting expenses in the field. The deadline for applications is January 11, 2019 and finalists will be notified by February 15. The winner will be announced in March.

It is an honor to work in partnership with the James W. Foley Foundation for this fellowship. Jim’s great strength, and a core of his legacy, is that he wrote about people with compassion. He showed us that despite and amid war, people still go on with their daily lives.

The list of past fellowship recipients is made up of promising emerging journalists, including Alex Potter, who photographed the children of Mosul, Iraq in “War Children,” and contributed to the GroundTruth podcast in an episode that launches today; and Dalia Mortada, who produced an audio documentary and podcast titled “From Syria With Baklava.”

For this year’s fellowship, we encourage applicants to present proposals for stories about education, health, culture, art, food, faith and other expressions of life in a region where too often reporters cover only conflict. The fellowship is open to journalists working in all forms of media including text, audio, film and photography, and GroundTruth is also looking for the fellow, no matter which medium they focus on, to contribute to a full-length podcast episode. Field reporting may take place anywhere, but must maintain an enterprising and human-centered approach to the reporting.

The selected fellow will receive mentorship and editorial support from the whole editorial team at GroundTruth, including GroundTruth Founder and longtime Middle East correspondent Charles Sennott.


The opportunity is intended for freelance reporters and specifically for early career journalists, which we would define as those with 1-5 years of experience. The candidates may be of any nationality, but must be familiar with Middle Eastern culture and have a demonstrated ability to report for an English-speaking audience.

The selected fellow will receive a grant of US $10,000 for field reporting to be carried out preferably in the second quarter of 2019. Finalists will be asked to submit a proposed project budget that must include appropriate safety training, insurance and travel costs.

The fellow’s work will be curated on the GroundTruth website as well as pitched to GroundTruth’s editorial partners for placement in consultation with the fellow. If a candidate already has an editorial partner who will take the work, please state that in the application.


The GroundTruth Project is dedicated to supporting a new generation of journalists to report on the most important stories of our time. GroundTruth is committed to narrative storytelling that enlightens and informs across media platforms, including digital, radio/podcast, television and documentary film. At the core of what we do is the idea of “ground truth,” which, put simply, means being on the ground to tell the story. GroundTruth, an independent, non-partisan organization registered by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is based at the PBS flagship producer WGBH in Boston, MA.


The mission of the James W. Foley Legacy Foundation is to advocate for the safe return of all Americans detained abroad, to protect independent conflict journalists and to educate regarding these threats to our freedom.


The application window is now closed.