Be an AU Media Fellow
Are you an African journalist, blogger, vlogger, content creator, or podcaster living and working in Africa or the diaspora? Are you passionate about promoting development-focused stories using emerging technologies, and through visual, written, oral and digital media? Apply for the inaugural African Union Media Fellowship.
As information gatekeepers, the media plays a role in ensuring checks and balances between those in power and their citizens.. They are essential in shaping how we learn, experience and perceive the world around us through stories, images, words, and motion pictures to ensure a fuller picture of our world.
Empowering the newsroom, empowers citizens.
As Africa moves into the 4th industrial revolution, with emerging technologies, African storytellers are now challenged to think of how to deploy new media technologies for citizen engagement to address the changing communications landscape. To ensure Africa remains in the race with the rest of the world, and benefit from digital transformation, the African Union (AU) Information and Communication Directorate has joined forces with the Citizens Engagement and Innovative Data Use for Africa’s Development programme implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) to create the AU Media Fellowship. The Fellowship brings together innovation and creativity to present under-reported stories that break-down stereotypes and create new narratives for the Africa We Want.
About the AU Media Fellowship
About the fellowship
The Fellowship is designed to provide a platform for African journalists and content creators to enhance their capacity to reframe the African narrative and to ensure that stories about the continent are balanced and true to the experiences of its people.
The AU Agenda 2063 strategic pillars recognize that media, communication and ICT sectors must be seen as holistic and inclusive, ensuring access for all members of society to technology and the knowledge economy. This is also in line with the AU Digital Transformation Strategy 2020-2030.
The objectives of the AU Media Fellowship is to:
- Train and build the capacity of journalists and/or content creators, to leverage creativity and innovation within the continent;
- Build capacity around innovative and transformative tools in journalism and media; and
- Create a platform for journalists to network and share best practices on the future of journalism
The Fellowship programme will kick-off with a study tour and capacity building workshops. The 20 selected fellows will benefit from direct access to various African Union leadership, and have the opportunity for on-the-ground reporting on the AU’s work around the Agenda 2063 strategic aspirations.
- The Fellowship is 12 months in duration and will begin in June 2022 with an international study trip to Germany to the “Global Media Forum”.
- The Fellows confirm with their application that they are available for an international study trip to Germany between June 15 – July 1 2022.
- Applicants must be able to devote time to the project if awarded a Fellowship.
- Fellows must be available for all training sessions indicated and must be able to work on assignments in between training blocks.
- The Fellows confirm availability for a 1-week training block in December 2022
- The Fellows confirm availability for a 1-week training block in April 2023.
June 2022 in-person training
Fellows meet in Germany, for a 2 week-long intensive media and advocacy camp.
June – September – Online Trainings and Networking
Fellows complete remote work with a mentor. Fellows and mentors focus on the Fellow’s outputs goals, and working towards tangible advocacy and policy objectives.
Fellows meet in-person or virtually for an intensive training and to present the results of the work period June – September.
October – December 2022
Remote work continues as Fellows receive support to write, pitch, and publish, complete media appearances, advocate for their work and broader policy change, and share their stories with targeted audiences.
Fellows meet in Addis Abeba to be introduced to the AU and to present the outcomes of the trainings.
January 2023 – April 2023
Fellows receive continued support from their mentor until the next class is announced.
April 2023 – Final Event and Certificates of Recognition
A closing event in Addis Abeba will formally close the fellowship. Fellows graduate to become Senior Fellows and become mentors for the next cohort of AU Media Fellows.
Call for applications deadline 30 April, 2022.
Applications are shortlisted in house then put to a jury panel who selects the winning applications. The Fellows are announced in May 2022
What Do Fellows Receive?
- International Study Trips and exposure
- Certified workshops and webinars with renowned international partners such as Deutsche Welle, BBC Media Action, Hass-Plattner-Institute, the AU, and international media houses
- Access to AU leadership and policy makers and network with other Fellows
- Support from Senior Mentors and Institutions
- Fellows awarded grants to enable them to produce detailed stories
Who Are We Looking For?
The AU Media Fellows are experienced journalists or communication experts ready to take the next leap in their career reporting from and for Africa. We seek journalists with a strong track record of publications who offer new perspectives on African debates. Fellowships are open to journalists in any medium. Fellows with a proven focus on innovation are strongly encouraged to apply.
The AU Media Fellowship is for you if you want to work on the following:
- Disrupt and challenge harmful and stereotypical narratives and shaping new narratives about and within the continent.
- Using innovative tools and analysis to highlight transformations taking place within the continent.
The AU Media Fellowship is open to journalists, bloggers, vloggers, content creators, and podcasters living on the continent or the diaspora.
Fellows must be actively involved in innovative media either as a journalist or related field of work for at least three years with a demonstrable impact-driven track record.
- All applicants for the AU Media Fellowship must be working journalists with at least three years of full-time, professional journalism experience or in a related field. Internships and journalism-related work completed as a university student do not count as professional experience.
- Applicants must speak, read, and write any of the AU official languages fluently in order to fully participate in and benefit from the Fellowship.
- Applicants may be affiliated or freelance journalists. However, all applicants must provide a reference letter or endorsement from a senior editor.
- With their application, the Fellows confirm willingness to report on African Union events and themes, as well as availability to be interviewed about the fellowship by international partners.
- The Fellows confirm willingness to participate in events and workshops for duration of the fellowship.
- Fellows must be able to travel to Berlin June 2022 and meet all criteria for eligibility for a Schengen Visa in their country, including but not limited to:
- Having a valid passport at least until December 2022
- Fully vaccinated against COVID-19 ( Find out more details on the website of the German Embassy in your country.)
- We will provide you with the necessary documents needed for your visa application. You will be responsible for acquiring the visa.
- All travel costs will be reimbursed and covered by us.
For the first time, the African Union hosts a Media Fellowship. The AU provides each Fellow with a grant, invaluable workshops and webinars by experts and renowned international organisations, and introductions to the AU.
The Fellowship is aimed at experienced journalists who seek to make a change in reporting on Africa, raising awareness and breaking down stereotypes.
Please read the instructions carefully as we will not consider incomplete applications.
Applications should consist of: -
- Resume: Please use a standard starndard format (no picture, religion or marital status).
- Cover letter: A one-page document outlining your motivation, qualifications, and experience.
- Proposal: Please include the following three sections:
- Story proposals: Please include a short description of the stories you plan to cover (about 200 words each), and whom you plan to contact for interviews.
- Publication plan: Specify your plan for publication (language and target publication).
- Social media: Briefly explain how you plan to engage with the African Union Commission in the course of the fellowship.
- Work samples: Please submit two work samples. If your work samples are in other forms of media (e.g. video) please email us and we will accommodate these requests.
* Indicates required field Applicant Details
* Full Name
* Date of Birth
* Place of Birth
* Country of Residence
* Short Bio | 600 characters (100 words)
* Upload CV
* Why are you interested in joining the AU Media Fellowship? | 1000 characters (approx 1 paragraph)
Please provide us with web links of two pieces of media you have produced.
* Link #1 * Link #2
* Description | 1000 characters (approx 1 paragraph)
If relevant, please describe the work in the links you have provided, and discuss the relevance of the work to the current project, if any.
Your reference should be written on headed paper and can be from a senior editor, an employer, or an established practitioner in your medium that is familiar with your work.
- Confirmation that they are familiar with your work and in what capacity your referee knows you (Senior editor, executive producer etc) If applicable.
- A comment on your application, particularly your ability to deliver the piece of media proposed.
The applications close on 30th April, 2022.