Empowers women by teaching them journalism skills.
Global Press Institute (GPI) uses journalism as a development tool to educate, employ and empower women, who produce high-quality local news coverage that elevates global awareness and ignites social change. GPI is building a network of professional women journalists throughout the developing world who earn a fair wage for reporting on their local communities. Their unique coverage of issues overlooked by mainstream media contributes directly to the development and empowerment of these women’s communities, brings greater transparency to their countries, and changes the way the world views their people and cultures.
- Mission | Theory Of Change
GPI’s theory of change is based on the idea that journalism is a development tool capable of solving two pressing global challenges: the decline of quality international journalism and women’s economic empowerment. The core of GPI is its original training-to-employment model that teaches traditional reporting, digital literacy, and writing skills to women around the world. Each woman who completes the training program receives an offer of employment and goes on to work within GPI’s global editorial network. The combination of skills-based education and long-term employment in a dignified profession empowers the women reporters and increases the quality of life for themselves and their families.
- History | Track Record
Cristi Hegranes founded the Global Press Institute in 2004, while she was working her “dream job” as a foreign correspondent in Nepal reporting for a newspaper. However, she soon realized the problematic foundations of journalism, including language fluency, cultural sensitivity, biases, and a lack of access to real people. In response to her experience, Cristi started the Global Press Institute to give local women with social, historical and political context the opportunity to receive journalism training and a professional platform. Now, in 2011, GPI operates in 25 countries, employs 120+ women, and has received numerous honors and awards. Furthermore, GPI’s journalism is now syndicated t more than 100 of the world’s top news outlets, including UPI, NPR, and the BBC. In 2011, GPI’s estimated global readership will surpass 5 million.
- Grant Usage
This grant would enable GPI to fulfill two of its strategic goals next year: 1) opening news desks in the Middle East/North Africa and Latin America regions, and 2) elevating its global multi-media capabilities.
In 2012, GPI aims to establish a news desk in Jordan and expand it pilot desk in Egypt. While funding for the Latin America region continues to be challenging, a grant from OPF would allow GPI to conduct new trainings and open desks in rural Chile and Brazil. Additionally, as technology remains a difficult commodity to acquire in many parts of the globe where GPI operates, a grant from OPF would allow the organization to obtain new technologies that would enable the production of podcasts, short videos, photo essays and even an SMS (text message) breaking news platform on the GPI Newswire.
- Financial, Staffing, & Project Summary
According to the 2010 financial forms, Global Press Institute had total revenues of $69,523 and expenditures of $61,002. The year-end balance as of 2010 was $8,521.
Global Press Institute, as of 2011, has 6 full-time and 118 part-time employees. Journalists are considered “part time” because they earn a living wage based on their country’s economic index.
- Working Group Analysis
They are small yet growing rapidly and their commitment to engaging local individuals is an inspiring part of their model. There is a lot of synergy between GPI and OPF because of the individual involvement/empowerment focus. In addition, they can continue operation with their current funding outlook but want to grow/expand aggressively.
- Nominator Endorsement
I nominated the Global Press Institute (GPI) because it is one of the most extraordinary and high-impact organizations that I’ve encountered. With a budget of roughly $100K a year (a serious bargain in philanthropy), it has directly changed the lives of the more than 120 women to whom it has provided professional journalism training and employment at fair wage; and it has impacted millions of people around the globe by increasing public awareness about the developing world and putting pressure on governments and societies to become more transparent, fair and democratic. My favorite example of GPI’s impact: when the Parliament of Nepal passed a new anti-discrimination law with relation to inter-caste marriage earlier this year, a member of the Prime Minister’s legal team credited GPI Senior Reporter Tara Bhattarai with forcing the issue into the national conversation! With OPF’s support, I know that GPI will be able to deepen and replicate this kind of change around the world.