SAJA Reporting Fellowships (September)

SAJA Reporting Fellowships (more details and better

This program is aimed at promoting a rare element in 24/7-news-cycle journalism, namely, in-depth and follow-up reporting on major events relating to South Asia or South Asians, long after the breaking-news crews have moved on.

Questions to Sandeep Junnarkar, SAJA Awards Chair:

As part of its mission to encourage in-depth coverage of South Asia and the South Asian Diaspora, SAJA is pleased to announce a call for submissions for the second annual SAJA Reporting Fellowships (SRF). Open to freelancers and staff journalists in any medium,
the fellowships are meant to encourage in-depth reporting projects by providing grants to cover a portion of reporting expenses.

A total of up to $10,000 may be given out annually, divided among projects or a single project at SAJA's discretion. Each fellowship award is typically between $3,000-$5,000. See the work of previous fellows:

In 2006, the fellowship is open to proposals on any in-depth topics based on the coverage of South Asia or the South Asian Diasapora.

Deadline for submitting proposals is Friday, Sept. 8, 2006.

For this year's program, to be eligible, applicants must:
* Have at least five years of journalism experience.
* Produce content in the English language.
* Be able to publish or broadcast the finished work in the United
* Be willing to work with an editor, chosen by SAJA, who will oversee the successful completion of the project.
* Make arrangements for the news organization( s) that publish(es) or air(s) the finished work(s) to agree to provide prominent credit
to SAJA.
* Be available to discuss the project at SAJA events, including but
not limited to the annual SAJA convention and/or other panel
Applications must be submitted by Friday, Sept. 8, 2006, and must include the following:
* A Project Proposal that describes the thesis of the project and why it's an important story. What is the news hook? Why should a news outlet publish, broadcast or post this story?
* A preliminary list of people to be interviewed.
* A DETAILED budget that spells out what expenses the fellowship funding will cover and how the rest of the project will be funded.
* A realistic timeline that shows SAJA's deadlines (see below) will be met.
* A resume and three work samples. We're looking for applicants with a successful track record in producing print, broadcast, radio, photographic or multimedia pieces. The applicant must provide the work samples either as URLs, attachments, or by cutting and pasting to the application. Broadcast applicants can also provide digital samples. If they do not have digital samples that can be submitted online, they must contact Sandeep Junnarkar to make other arrangements.
* Support letter(s). If the applicant is an employee of a media company, a letter of support from the editor/employer/ supervisor. The letter must show that the applicant's employer will give the applicant the time to report, produce and complete the work to meet our deadlines, as well as allot time for the fellow to speak about the project at SAJA events. The letter must show the company's willingness to share publication rights with SAJA after an initial, exclusive first-run period is over. The letter MUST also contain contact information for the employer.
* If the applicant is a freelancer, a list of potential organizations the
project can be pitched to.
* A list of at least three references.

Timeline: The timeline for the SRF is as follows:
Fri., Sept. 8, 2006: Applications due.
Sun., Oct. 8, 2006: SAJA fellows named.
Between Oct. 9, 2006-Jan. 15, 2007: Reporting completed.
February 15, 2007: Finished project submitted to SAJA.

February 16, 2007-March 1, 2007: First-use period, for exclusive publication by the fellow's employer, or if a freelancer, by the media company with whom the freelancer is contracted.

March 2, 2007: SAJA disseminates the work widely, through the web, other media and panel discussions.

July 12-15, 2007: SAJA highlights the projects at the 2007 SAJA Convention & Job Fair at Columbia University.

Judging: The pool of applicants will be narrowed down to approximately five finalists. A panel of judges will review the finalists, and rank the projects from first to last. The SAJA board will make the final determinations on what amount of money will be awarded. Finalists will be notified and expected to be available for interviews with the judges if necessary.

1. All decisions are final and subject to the discretion and judgment of the judges and the SAJA board.

2. SAJA board members and members of their families are not eligible to apply.

3. SAJA is not responsible for any financial or legal liabilities (or any
other liabilities) that arise from the actions of the fellow(s).

4. SAJA reserves the right to amend or extend deadlines or changing other procedures relating to the fellowship program.

HOW TO SUBMIT A PROPOSAL: After reading this page carefully, fill in this online form [ ].

Deadline is Friday, Sept. 8, 2006, at 11:59 pm Eastern Time.

Questions to Sandeep Junnarkar, SAJA Awards Chair:

Mail a check payable to "SAJA Group Inc" ("SAJA Reporting Fellowships" in the memo line) to SAJA Group, Inc, c/o John Laxmi, Treasurer, 19 Einsehower Road, Closter, NJ 07624; e-mail: johnlaxmisaja at

SAJA Group, Inc. is a non-profit charitable organization (EIN: 55-0844632) and is registered with the State of New York Charities Bureau (Registration Number 20-70-28). Please send any funding questions to

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