One World Media Fellowship is aimed at aspiring journalists and filmmakers who seek to make a career out of reporting on stories from the global south.

Working in film, print, audio or multimedia, our Fellows’ projects bring together integrity and creativity to present underreported stories that break down stereotypes and build cross-cultural connections.

We guide filmmakers and journalists on a single project, and provide a supportive network of mentors and peers through the production and completion of their project.

We seek to champion diverse emerging talent, and particularly encourage submissions from underrepresented groups (people of colour, ethnic groups, women, LGBTQ+, or people with disabilities) as well as from people from and based in the global south.


  • Open for entries: Weds, 24 February 2021
  • Deadline: 5PM (BST) Weds, 7 April 2021
  • Fellows announced: Late May 2021

Please Note: Our new free online course provides an excellent foundation for applying to the One World Media Fellowship by helping you develop your story idea, prepare your proposal, and get acquainted with successful pieces of reporting in the field.

We strongly encourage anyone applying to the Fellowship to complete the course, and upload your certificate to your application.


Is the Fellowship going ahead, despite the spread of COVID-19?

Yes, the Fellowship is going ahead. One World Media will continue to champion diverse voices and stories from around the world, and support our global community of aspiring filmmakers and journalists. The Fellowship is a remote programme that provides support through email, calls, webinars and video conferencing, and will continue to operate as such.


I’m not sure when I can travel to cover my story. Should I still apply?

We are very aware that most projects are or will be affected by the current circumstances, given the long term uncertainty. Travel might be restricted for months to come, and stories are likely to change along with other global developments. For our 2021 fellows, there will be increased flexibility with regards to reporting schedules and delivery dates, and we will be open to accommodating changes in stories where necessary. We understand that it is difficult to pitch a project when you can’t be sure that you will be able to deliver it. We recommend thinking of this Fellowship as a 1 to 1.5 year programme and submit your proposal(s) accordingly.


It’s difficult to confirm access under these circumstances. Can I just pitch an idea?

We expect that your pitch is more than just an idea, that it is a well researched proposal. We understand that confirming participation of your subjects is difficult at the moment. Nevertheless, we encourage you to communicate with people and organisations you’re hoping to work with, and make sure they are happy to take part. If granted the funds and the Fellowship, we expect that you will be able to begin reporting when safe to do so, and have confirmed participants. Under current circumstances, we will be more flexible with our consideration during selection. However, we recommend that you include a considered plan for how you are going to tell the story. 


My project location seems to be on the FCDO’s list of countries with ‘advise against essential travel’. Does that mean my project is ineligible?

The safety of our Fellows is our top priority. We follow the FCDO advice to determine the safety of travel for our Fellows and do not support projects in hostile environments. However, due to the global spread of the virus, at the moment most countries fall under FCDO’s ‘advice against essential travel’ warning. Your project location might still be eligible in the long run if this advice is likely to be lifted once the risk of COVID-19 has significantly reduced and it is safe to travel. We will be continuously monitoring the safety of international travel, and assess each project on an individual basis. We hope that in the coming months, it will again be possible to operate safely around the world and produce media, in one way or another. So we encourage applicants to still submit their proposals, but plan their reporting for mid-late 2021 or early 2022.

What Do Fellows Receive?

  • £1,000 production grant
  • Executive Producer for your project
  • Career mentorship
  • Workshops and webinars by industry experts
  • Fair Reporting and Security Guidance
  • Introductions to commissioners
  • Network of like-minded Fellows and Alumni

Who Are We Looking For?

We are open to applications from all around the world.

One World Media Fellows are aspiring filmmakers and journalists ready to take the next leap in their career reporting from the global south. Looking for their first director role or solo investigation, our Fellows experiment and learn in a supportive environment.

In 2021, we will select 20 Fellows. We have 10 spaces for applicants based anywhere in the world, and 10 spaces reserved for applicants from across Africa.

What Projects Are We Looking For?

  • Projects in pre-production that tell engaging stories from low- and middle-income countries across the global south
  • Non-fiction media across all platforms: film, print, audio, photojournalism, and multimedia
  • Proposals where majority of the budget is in place or achievable in a short time-frame
  • Projects that can be delivered within a year – for films this is under 30 mins
  • Stories that are strong enough to be published or broadcast in established media outlets. We are looking for genuine journalism or documentary and will fund media that could ultimately appear in existing newspapers, magazines, radio, TV channels, professional news websites and online platforms, etc.

Beyond this, we are particularly interested in proposals that:

  • Seek to tell original stories in a way that will engage the intended audience
  • Highlight the voices of people living in the global south, particularly voices that are not often heard
  • Have established contacts and contributors who have confirmed their willingness to take part
  • Have considered ethical issues and safety
  • Do not simply cover negative aspects of the global south without considering the context in which they exist
  • Demonstrate an understanding of accountability and fair practice in news gathering and reporting
  • Show a willingness to work with local people in equal partnership in co-production on a story.

*** We do not fund fiction or feature length projects.

Frequently Asked Questions


Is there an application fee?

Application to the OWM Fellowship is free.

Can I apply with more than one project?

We suggest you apply with your strongest proposal. However if you wish to apply with multiple projects, you need to fill in a separate application for each proposal.

Who do I get a reference letter from?

Your reference should be written on headed paper and can be from a tutor/lecturer, a commissioner, an employer, or an established practitioner in your medium that is familiar with your work. It should clarify in what capacity your referee knows you; confirmation that they are familiar with your work, and a comment on your application, particularly your ability to deliver the piece of media proposed.

How much research do I need to show?

We expect you to have researched and verified your stories before applying. We will generally not consider your proposal if you have not established contacts and contributors on the ground and obtained their agreement to take part. We do not expect you to have a trailer or existing footage, however it always helps if you have any visuals to support your application.

How much experience do you expect the applicants to have?

We aim to support journalists and media makers at the early stages of their careers. We expect a basic level of industry experience, as we do not provide any technical training, and expect you to be able to deliver the piece of media you are proposing. We prioritise emerging and early career applicants, over established filmmakers and journalists who have directed or produced numerous pieces and already have access to a network of industry professionals in their field.


Which project locations are eligible?

Projects should focus on stories, topics or issues in, about or related to low- and middle-income countries across the global south. This includes countries across Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America, the Middle East, Russia or the Post-Soviet States.

What type of media do you support?

We support non-fiction media across all platforms: film, print, audio, photojournalism, and multimedia.

Who is eligible to apply for the Fellowship?

The applications are open to anyone from around the world, as long as the proposed story is about or from the global south. We have 10 spaces reserved for applicants from across Africa, and 10 spaces for applicants based anywhere else in the world.

Who is eligible for the 10 spaces reserved for applicants across Africa?

Applicants who are from AND based in the continent of Africa, which means those who hold citizenship, and live and work primarily in Africa. If you are based in Africa but from anywhere else in the world, please select the International category.

Do you support projects at post production stage?

Unfortunately, no. We support projects at pre-production or production stage, where the main reporting has not yet taken place.


How does the selection process work?

Call for applications for the Fellowship open once a year in February, with a deadline in April. Applications are shortlisted in house then put to a jury panel of industry professionals who select the winning applications. Our new Fellows are announced in May.

Do you select Fellows based on the project or the applicant?

We consider each application individually, both in terms of the proposed project, and the applicant’s profile, experience and career ambitions.

What type of stories are you looking for?

We are looking for stories that highlight the voices of people living in the global south, particularly those that are not often heard. We seek original stories, told in engaging ways. We encourage positive, empowering, and solutions oriented pieces, considering the context and working in partnership with local people.

I wasn't selected for the Fellowship. How can I receive feedback?

Due to the large number of applications we receive, we are not able to provide individual feedback on applications that are not selected. Here are some of the most common reasons for applications not being shortlisted: access not secured, budget not feasible, project too large scale, topic or characters not original, applicant too early or advanced in their career, research not thorough enough. It could also be that there was nothing wrong with your application and simply there were other stronger applications, so we encourage that you try again next round, with an updated proposal.


How long should my final project be?

We support small scale projects that can be delivered in a year. This differs depending on the type of media you work in, however for documentary films, this is under 30 minutes.

How long do I have to deliver my work?

You have one calendar year to complete your proposed media and deliver either a short film, a print article, an audio or a multimedia piece.

Can I seek further external funding after I become a Fellow?

We expect you to have the majority of your budget in place at the time of your application, and ready to start production. There are no restrictions on receiving more funding during the process, as long as you keep us informed, and the changes in the scale of the project do not affect your delivery to One World Media. While we fully support your journey to receive commissions and reach further audiences, we still expect you to deliver a short piece of media within one year.

If you have any questions about your application, or would like to find out more about the One World Media Fellowship, please get in touch via email.