GroundTruth announces the recipients of the Global Migration, Refugees and Resettlement Reporting Fellowship

The GroundTruth Project is pleased to announce today the recipients of the Global Migration, Refugees and Resettlement Reporting Fellowship.

With support from the MacArthur Foundation and the Henry Luce Foundation, GroundTruth has selected 13 fellows to tell narrative-driven, multimedia stories of migration and resettlement shaped by climate change, economic and social instability, war and famine, and the COVID-19 pandemic. The fellows will focus on resettled communities in Europe and North America, including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Spain, Italy, the UK and the Netherlands.

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Meet the fellows:

Sadia Rafiquddin graduated from Columbia University with an M.S. in Journalism where she was a Toni Stabile Fellow. She also holds a Master of Human Rights from the University of Sydney and an Honors B.A. in International Relations and Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of Toronto. Prior to journalism, Sadia’s decade-long career in global health and public service included researching HIV/AIDS in Southern Africa, addressing food insecurity in low-income communities, and working in Montreal’s health care sector. She was among the youngest recipients of the Women’s Executive Network’s Canada’s 100 Most Powerful Women Award. As a GroundTruth Global Migration Reporting Fellow, Sadia will report on the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on Montreal’s refugee population.

Aryana Noroozi is a photojournalist from San Diego, California. She recently graduated from The Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Her work covers urban social issues, international stories, and the southern border. Although a camera is Aryana’s primary storytelling tool, she strives to produce multimedia projects to complement her images.This work includes short audio documentaries and videos.

Henry Peck is a journalist and researcher with interests in migration, urbanism, and human rights. His work has appeared in Guernica magazine, Deutsche Welle, Middle East Institute, and elsewhere. He is a close observer of surveillance trends, on which he previously worked for Human Rights Watch.


Cesar Rodriguez was born in Tepic, Nayarit in 1983. He studied photography in México City, and has taken workshops with Mary Ellen Mark, Jaime Permuth, Javier Arcenillas, Narciso Contreras, Andrew Lichtenstein and Maggie Steber among others.

His work has been exhibited in places like Berlin, London, Biel, Silicon Valley, Bogota, Buenos Aires, New York, New Orleans, California, Sydney, Guadalajara and México City. His work has been published in National Geographic, Time Magazine, Der Spiegel, The New York Times Lens Blog, MSNBC, Buzzfeed, CBS, El Pais Semanal, El Pais, Le Monde, Huffington Post, Bloomberg Media, The Guardian, LA Times, The Washington Post, and others. His short film called “Huicholes del Tabaco” has been awarded and included in several film festivals.

Somer Al Abdallah is from Syria and living in the Netherlands as a refugee. He had been working as a writer, journalist and opinion maker in Syria and Turkey, before migrating to the Netherlands. He wrote for different newspapers there and worked as a researcher as well. In the Netherlands he started writing columns one year after arrival. He works as New Media editor at the NTR, an independent Dutch television broadcaster, and journalist coach at RFG Magazine, a magazine that is made by refugees. His work is always about refugees, cultural differences and integration.

Rinske Bijl is a freelance journalist and photographer based in the Netherlands. She is interested in the consequences of migration and migration policies on the lives of people. Recently, she wrote a narrative longread about a young Afghan refugee who suffered from mental illness. She also wrote about the sexual exploitation of male refugees and Dutch people opening their homes to undocumented refugees. As a photographer, she’s doing editorial portraits and reportages for different magazines.

Laura Herrero Garvin earned a Master in Creation Documentary at Pompeu Fabra University. As La Sandía Digital co founder in Mexico, she has directed over 20 short documentary films. She has worked as Director and Director of Photography during the last 10 years. Her feature-length debut, “El Remolino” premiered at the Locarno Film Festival, was selected in more than seventy festivals and awarded for Best Documentary in several festivals such as DocumentaMadrid (Spain). Her last short “¿Me vas a gritar?” was part of International Selection in Clermont Ferrand, Málaga and Palm Spring. Her latest documentary “La Mami” premiered at IDFA Feature-length Competition, and was part of the Official Selection at MoMA Doc Fortnight, SXSW, and Guadalajara, among others.

Majo Siscar Banyuls is a freelance journalist with 14 years of experience in Latin America and Spain, reporting on social, gender, migration and human rights issues. Her work has been published in The New York Times, Vice, Newsweek Mexico, El Universal, El País, or 5W, among others. She is the author of Tremendas: luchadoras latinoamericanas (Barlin, 2019). After living for 8 years in Mexico, she is very involved with latino collectives in Barcelona where she is a founding member of Taula per Mèxic, an NGO that offers a temporary refuge in Barcelona to Mexican activists and journalists at risk.

William Martin III is currently a Martin Fellow earning his M.A. at NYU’s Graduate School of Journalism in News and Documentary. He is also a 2016 graduate of NYU’s Tisch Photography and Imaging program. He is an early career grant recipient at National Geographic, Fledgling Fund recipient, a Genesis Fellow at Great Big Story, and a past Video Fellow at the GroundTruth Project working on international human rights documentaries. Looking ahead, William is also working with indigenous communities in Brazil to create a short documentary on the growing and sometimes violent conflict between the environment, those who protect it, and the exploitative economies poisoning it. His multimedia work is currently featured in New Humanitarian, Time, Teen Vogue, The GroundTruth Project, BRIC Media, and Al Jazeera.

Enrique Unzueta graduated with an MFA in filmmaking from Tisch School of the Arts. He has directed short films in Singapore, Philippines, Mexico and the US. Unzueta’s work as a cinematographer has been shot in 10 countries around the world in China, South Korea, Singapore, India, Vietnam, France, Czech Republic, Puerto Rico, Mexico and the United States, and has won Best Commercial at HollyShorts, La Femme International Film Festival, California International Shorts Festival and MO-FILM competitions. Unzueta was a fellow in the 2019 Project Involve, Film Independent’s mentorship program. Unzueta is an adjunct professor at the Universidad de las Californias Internacional and  is currently working on a documentary about queer asylum seekers in Tijuana, Mexico

Joseph Ataman is a long-form text and video journalist, whose work often focuses on migration and the lives of children.

He has lived and reported from across the Middle East and was awarded an Overseas Press Club fellowship with the Associated Press in Turkey. A graduate of the University of Cambridge and Harvard University, he was mentored by the BBC’s Martha Kearney during 2019-20 as part of the John Schofield Trust. Currently a freelance video producer with CNN, Joseph speaks French, Turkish, and Russian.

James Imam is an arts journalist, who writes mainly on the crossover between the arts, society and politics. He is a regular contributor to The Financial Times, for which he is both an opera critic and feature writer, and has been published in The Times (of London), The New York Times, The Guardian and The Economist. Based in Milan since 2013, and is a fluent Italian speaker. He has reported on topics including the rise of China as a classical music superpower, the cultivation of opera traditions in the Middle East and ideological clashes between theatres and the far right in Germany. James has a degree in social anthropology from Cambridge University.

Tommy Nocera is a graduate of Columbia University’s Journalism School’s class of 2020 and a GroundTruth Migration Reporting Fellow. He was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY and, after receiving an undergraduate degree in journalism and international relations, he worked full-time in the construction field while covering local news. Lifelong exposure to the complex and diverse migrant communities in and around his home informed his reporting on global events. International issues, occurring thousands of miles away, could be seen and felt in Brooklyn among immigrant groups still intimately connected to their homelands. By linking those groups and those events, Tommy was able to give a local perspective to foreign affairs.