📍Victoria, BC - It’s no secret that it’s getting harder for journalists in BC to have time and resources to deeply investigate public interest issues. Budget cuts across traditional media newsrooms are common, and even as new media outlets try out different funding models—long gone are the days where advertising, subscriptions, and classifieds each made up a third of generous newspaper budgets—extra help is always appreciated.
Which is why Overstory is so glad to see the Lieutenant Governor’s office initiate a new fellowship. Starting this year, and for at least three years, the office will award a $25,000 fellowship to a BC journalist, or team of journalists, to spend a few months investigating a story they wouldn’t have the resources to do otherwise.
This three year commitment is being made in partnership with the Jack Webster Foundation, through private donations through the Government House Foundation. The foundation also funds initiatives and awards like the BC Reconciliation Award, the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Literary Excellence, a Youth Advisory Council, and Stewards of the Future.
“One of the greatest challenges faced in our society is the fragility of democracy in the 21st century,” Austin said. “Across our communities, we are seeing increased polarization as we encounter trials on a magnitude never experienced, all the while news outlets we rely on to maintain an informed citizenry are eroding and under-resourced. Many of the most crucial challenges we face are under-reported and do not receive the deep, complex storytelling deserved and necessary to better inform the citizens of British Columbia. This fellowship helps to address this need.”
Applications are open now and close on February 28, 2022.