Take a look at this wonderful organization that is dedicated to giving voices in crisis and conflict zones, supporting local journalists to cover news when international journalists cannot be there. The Institute of War and Peace Reporting strives to achieve the truth to support freedom and human rights. Conflict reporting is of course essential , but also highly dangerous and the work that these journalists do is irreplaceable. The IWPR hits issues like women’s rights, human trafficking , human rights abuse and health crises after partnering with local community groups, NGOs, the UN and more.
Through the training of local journalists with advanced technological and professional skills, IWPR gives people the tools to hold their governments accountable and positively change their societies. It’s strange to think about but the way the industry is changing, fewer international journalists will “parachute” into another country they are unfamiliar with to report on war or famine. Instead, local journalists who understand the context and complexities and are cheaper will cover the events. I’m not sure how I feel about that since I always dreamed of traveling the world and reporting from exotic, far off places… but if the industry professionals are right, then I guess that will have to remain a dream.
If you want to get involved and support their cause, you can donate privately to IWPR and contribute to the future of conflict journalism. The organization is actually registered as a non-profit charity in the UK and the US. I commend the IWPR for raising awareness in the media to drive change and create dialogue about sensitive, contentious issues. I actually got chills watching this informational video about IWPR, because it makes me so happy to see there are people who understand the value of the media in giving a voice to the voiceless. It’s too bad they’re not accepting any internship positions right now, because wow, would I love to to work there! Until then, I will add this to my list of important alternative news sources that cover underreported issues and keep myself updated. If you are especially interested in international affairs, I think you should too!