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Reporting on Fisheries in Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico

Call for Applications
Published on
26 Jan 2024
crabs in a crate
22 February 2024, 11:59 PM, America/Belize CST info.ejn [at] internews.org

Internews’ Earth Journalism Network (EJN) is holding a workshop on fisheries journalism in Belize City in April 2024, to equip journalists in Belize and surrounding countries with the skills necessary to report on the protection and sustainable management of fisheries in the Mesoamerican Reef region. 

Please read the following sections carefully, as they contain important information on eligibility and the application process.    


Overview 

Stretching for 625 miles along the coast of Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico, the Mesoamerican Reef (MAR) is the largest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere. However, less than 10% of the reef is fully protected. With most marine-protected areas in the region still allowing fishing, studies have found that its fish stocks are declining rapidly.  

The Mesoamerican Reef is a critically important ecosystem for the region’s economy: A 2019 report from the United Nations Environment Programme and other organizations found that if the reef continues to decline, their value could fall by $3.1 billion per year. In a scenario where the reef is protected, the report calculated the reef system could “unlock” an additional $35 billion for Mesoamerican economies.  

At this juncture, accurate and engaging media coverage is crucial to inform the public and hold policymakers involved in marine resource management accountable to their commitments.  

To bolster journalists’ skills in this area, increase reporting in the region and foster opportunities for networking and collaboration, EJN is hosting an in-depth fisheries journalism workshop in Belize City from April 12-14, 2024. The workshop will bring together journalists from Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico, subject matter experts, community leaders and other relevant stakeholders. 

Workshop details 

The workshop will be held in Belize City from April 12-14, 2024. We plan to select between 12-15 participants, with 3 spots reserved for journalists from neighboring countries: Honduras, Mexico and Guatemala. Applicants will be notified if they have been selected by mid-March at the latest.  

Accommodation and transportation will be provided to journalists selected from outside Belize City, EJN will also cover airfare for journalists selected from Honduras, Mexico and Guatemala. All participating journalists will receive a stipend for food and other incidental expenses. Journalists traveling into Belize City from elsewhere in the country or region should expect to travel on April 11 and return home on April 15.  

The workshop will be conducted in English. Participating journalists will learn about fisheries management issues at the local, country and regional levels, including threats to fishery populations, the perspectives of local fishers, current measures in place to monitor and manage fisheries, proposed solutions to prevent decline and more. Expert speakers from the Mesoamerican region and elsewhere will join in-person or virtually to answer questions and lead sessions.  

In addition to classroom sessions, one day will be spent on a field trip to a relevant location. The specific details of the field trip have yet to be confirmed, but it will allow participating journalists to better understand fisheries issues from a local on-ground perspective.  

Following the workshop, participants will have the chance to apply for a story grant to produce an in-depth story about a fisheries issue of their choice. They will have an opportunity to develop and receive feedback on their pitch during the workshop. If selected for the story grant, journalists will also benefit from one-on-one mentorship with an experienced journalist to guide them through the story production process.  

We also encourage journalists to pursue story ideas that emerge from their experience at the workshop. If they do so, all published stories and/or broadcasts must disclose EJN support by including this tagline: “This story was produced with support from Internews’ Earth Journalism Network.”   

Eligibility 

Journalists based in Belize, Honduras, Mexico and Guatemala are eligible for this opportunity. For journalists who are employed as staff at their media outlets, written permission from their editor is required to attend. Both staffers and freelancers will need to secure a written commitment to publish any stories that may result from the workshop.  

For the purposes of this workshop opportunity, we will accept applications in English. Applicants must have a sufficient understanding of English to participate in the workshop, although stories may be produced in any language.  

Applications are open to journalists working in any medium (online, print, television, radio, multimedia). We welcome applications from early-career journalists and experienced reporters with a track record of covering fisheries issues.   

We encourage applications from freelance reporters and staff at all types of media organizations – international, national, local and community-based.  

EJN reserves the right to disqualify applicants from consideration if they have been found to have engaged in unethical or improper professional conduct, including, but not limited to, plagiarism and/or submitting AI-generated content as their own. 

Application process    

  • Click the 'Apply now' button at the top of the page.    
  • If you have an existing account, you'll need to log in. Since we recently updated our website, you might have to reset your password by clicking the “Forgot password?” link in the log in page. If you don’t have an account, you must register by clicking “Log in” on the top right of the page and click the “Sign up” link at the bottom of the page that opens. Click here for detailed instructions on how to create an account, and here for detailed instructions on how to reset your password.    
  • If you start the application and want to come back and complete it later, you can click 'Save Draft.' To return to the draft, you'll need to go back to the opportunity and click 'Apply now' again to finalize the application. Applications should provide a detailed budget in an Excel spreadsheet with justification for the amount requested. Download the budget template now by clicking on this link.    

 

If you encounter difficulties with submitting your application or have questions about the grants, please email [email protected]. Do not contact any other Internews email regarding this opportunity, as we will not receive it.     

Applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered. 


Banner image: Stone crabs caught in Belize’s waters / Credit: Dion Vansen.  

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