GlobalPost GroundTruth reporting fellowship on rising youth unemployment

We present an international journalism fellowship for 20 young reporters of any nationality who will be chosen to create multimedia projects related to the youth unemployment crisis.

They have been called the “lost generation” and “generation jobless.” In Algeria, they are known as hittistes — wall-leaners. In Egypt, they were called revolutionaries — until the established powers pushed them back to the fringe. And in Nigeria, young men in gangs called Area Boys bear tattoos reading “Born and Thrown Away.”

Nearly one quarter of the world’s young people are now in 21st-century limbo: not employed, not enrolled in school nor in any professional training. That’s as many as 290 million young men and women age 15-24, who as economist Umair Haque wrote about London after the youth-led United Kingdom riots in 2011, “feel they’re finished before they start.”

Against a backdrop of profound — and still rising — global income inequality, youth-driven social movements have only intensified, challenging the status quo in Brazil, Turkey, Egypt, Britain, the United States and many other places with limited success. Millions of millennials struggle to navigate day-to-day challenges like making a living, paying rent and affording tuition. While some have allied themselves with hopeful social movements, others have turned to violence, malaise and despair.

Today GlobalPost and its foundation-supported reporting initiative The GroundTruth Project announce an international journalism fellowship for 20 young reporters of any nationality who will be chosen to create mobile-optimized multimedia projects that tell human stories related to the youth unemployment crisis. The fellows’ work will be presented in partnership with RYOT News.

“As youth unemployment and disengagement reaches staggering proportions in so many corners of the world, we want to explore how young people are expressing their frustration,” said GlobalPost co-founder and editor-at-large Charles M. Sennott, who heads up The GroundTruth Project.

“With this fellowship, young reporters will go out and find the stories of their contemporaries and listen to the voices of discontent. The reporters will explore how the energy of unemployed youth might be harnessed for good rather than sitting idle or in many cases becoming a destructive force,” Sennott added.

Candidates may apply alone or with a partner. We will select 10 teams with two fellows each for a total of 20 fellows. The work will be done in ten different countries where the issue of youth unemployment is dramatically unfolding, such as Nigeria, Egypt, Brazil, Spain, Kosovo and any where we can be convinced there is an important story to tell.

Each team will work in a different country and be responsible for producing an in-depth report that will combine a written narrative with photography, video or audio. Creative ways of working with data will be a welcome part of any application. The work of each team will be published as part of a GlobalPost Special Report.

The project will also include a series of short, mobile-friendly videos to be shared via Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr and Twitter (#gtyouth) among other platforms. Fellows will combine the digital technology of smart phones, audio recorders, GoPro and SLR cameras with fundamental journalism techniques like face-to-face interviewing and storytelling craft.

Proposed story angles may include but are not limited to: education, class/inequality, social services/austerity, art/expression, political movements and crime/violence. All pitches should explain what makes the applicant(s) uniquely qualified to tell the story being proposed.

Active consideration will be given to younger applicants who want to find the voices of their own generation, though all candidates with demonstrated success telling the stories of millennials will be considered as well.

Candidates who present budgets that are workable and precise will be most likely to be selected for this fellowship, which is made possible by a cornerstone grant from the Ford Foundation. Funding specifications are provided on the online application form.

The fellowship will be led by GlobalPost co-founder and editor-at-large Charles Sennott along with VII Photo Agency co-founder Gary Knight and GlobalPost senior editor Kevin Grant. Each team of two will be assigned a veteran mentor based in the region where the reporting will be completed.

The application deadline is December 31, 2013. Winners will be notified by January 15, 2014. Assignments will be completed on rolling deadlines but all work must be submitted by May 31, 2014.

Click here for the online application form.

GlobalPost is the world news site with outstanding original reporting from country-based journalists in all regions of the world. Noted by The New York Times as “offering a mix of news and features that only a handful of other news organizations can rival,” GlobalPost offers fresh, in-depth perspective on the changing global picture that affects us all by combining traditional journalistic values and the power of new media. GlobalPost has received a number of prestigious journalism awards for its work, including the Peabody Award, the Polk Award, two Edward R. Murrow Awards, and the Overseas Press Club Award.

The GroundTruth Project is a foundation-supported reporting initiative led by GlobalPost co-founder and editor-at-large Charles M. Sennott. GroundTruth produces Special Reports on GlobalPost and is dedicated to training the next generation of foreign correspondents in the digital age. It is focused on issues of social justice including human rights, freedom of expression, emerging democracies, the environment, religious affairs and global health.

RYOT News ( is the first breaking news site to connect every story with a related action. Founded in 2012 by Bryn Mooser and David Darg, RYOT News empowers readers to learn not only what’s going on in the world, but also what they can do about it. A percentage of all RYOT’s advertising revenue is donated to a featured non-profit, which changes weekly.

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