The Overseas Press Club of America announced today that it has received a substantial grant from the Ford Foundation that will allow it to launch a third round of micro-grants for freelance journalists around the world who have worked for American news organizations and whose careers have been disrupted by COVID-19.
“We are honored that the Ford Foundation chose to give the Overseas Press Club such a generous award," said OPC President Paula Dwyer. "And we are doubly honored to use it to help freelancers in need. In these perilous times, I can't think of a more worthy cause."
The grant will allow the OPC to provide more than 90 micro-grants of $1,000 each. The deadline for applying for the first round of giving is Feb. 15, 2021. The club anticipates that the grants will be given in multiple stages.
The OPC granted nearly 50 micro-grants of $750 to OPC members around the world in two rounds of giving in 2020. In their applications for the grants, freelancers described how COVID-19 travel restrictions have hobbled them, how some news organizations they depended on have collapsed and how surviving news organizations have dramatically cut their freelance budgets and delayed payments.
In many cases, freelancers have been forced to dig deep into their savings or to max out their credit cards. “Because of COVID-19, an entire way of life is at stake,” said Dwyer. “And with freelancers in such peril, news organizations that depend on them for solid coverage of difficult stories in many difficult countries are simply not getting the news.” Having cut back their own bureau networks of staff members over many years, U.S. news organizations depend on thousands of freelancers and independent journalists of many nationalities.
All freelancers who have worked for any American news organization in any medium within the past 12 months are eligible for this third round of grants. They do not have to be members of the OPC. All nationalities are eligible if they worked for a U.S. news outlet. To read more and apply, click the button below.
For more information contact Patricia Kranz, Executive Director of the Overseas Press Club