Journalists in Distress Fund

Canadian Journalists for Free Expression operates the Journalists in Distress Fund for the benefit of working journalists in defence of democracy, human rights, justice and freedom of expression. The fund exists primarily to encourage freedom of expression and the practice of journalism, and to provide humanitarian assistance to journalists whose lives and well-being are threatened.

The Fund provides financial assistance to journalists and their families whose lives are at risk or whose freedom of expression has been seriously infringed. Examples of fundable expenses are medical costs arising from imprisonment or physical mistreatment, legal costs arising from action taken in the courts against journalists because of their reporting as well as emergency travel costs so that journalists and their families can escape persecution.

Among other cases, the Journalists in Distress Fund has provided emergency assistance to a trio of persecuted Ethiopian journalists who fled to Kenya; a Thai journalist who, after recovering from a shooting, required money to continue publication of his newspaper; and the wife and child of a disappeared Belarusian journalist, who was said to have been abducted on orders of the government.

Preference is given to journalists working in their home countries. However, requests will also be considered from journalists forced into exile, especially if they continue to cover their home country.

Funds are not granted for ongoing expenses to organizations, institutions or enterprises.

Amount granted: normally from $200 to $2,000 USD, depending on the case.

There are no deadlines.