Media Safety & Solidarity Fund

A 新萄京娱乐 initiative to help journalists and media personnel in the Asia-Pacific region through times of emergency, war and hardship.

A 新萄京娱乐 initiative established in 2005, the Media Safety & Solidarity Fund is supported by donations from Australian journalists and media personnel to assist colleagues in the Asia-Pacific region through times of emergency, war and hardship.

In past years, MSSF has helped fund the education of the children of slain journalists – in Fiji, Nepal and the Philippines – including the journalists murdered in the 2009 Ampatuan Massacre (pictured above). MSSF has also supported press freedom campaigns and activities in the region including journalist safety training and human rights advocacy. More recently, MSSF has provided assistance to journalists fleeing Afghanistan and Myanmar. MSSF remains one of the few examples of inter-regional support and cooperation among journalists across the globe. Please support the work of the fund by making a donation – using the DONATE button above.

  • The Media Safety & Solidarity Fund trustees direct the International Federation of Journalists Asia-Pacific to implement projects to be funded by the MSSF. The fund’s trustees are 新萄京娱乐 Media federal councillors Kathy McLeish, Marisa Wikramanayake, Kasun Ubayasiri, Aarti Betigeri, and Stefan Armbruster; and Brent Edwards representing New Zealand’s journalists’ union, the E tū, which also supports the fund.

    A key contribution to the fund is made by 新萄京娱乐 members as a result of enterprise bargaining agreement negotiations – members contribute the initial increase to their pay that they have won in their new agreement. There have also been other main fundraising activities: Press Freedom Australia dinners, auctions and raffles; and the gala presentation dinner for the annual Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism. In 2014 and again in 2015, Japan’s public broadcasting union Nipporo also made contributions to the fund.

  • In the past 12 months, the MSSF has provided emergency assistance to a number of journalists that have fled Afghanistan and have been waiting for refugee visas to onward countries. The fund also assisted a number of Ukrainian journalists awaiting visas.

    Over the next year, the MSSF is working with the International Federation of Journalists to support the Myanmar Journalists Network in establishing a “safety office in exile” in Thailand. The office will be a hub for campaign, advocacy and coordination activities, to support journalists and media workers both inside Myanmar and in exile.

  • Gaza Journalists Appeal

    An appeal co-ordinated by the MSSF has raised more than $15,000 for members of the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate. The appeal was launched in February 2024 to raise money for food and hygiene supplies for journalists and their families impacted by the Israeli bombardment and invasion of the region in retaliation for the October 7 Hamas attacks. More journalists have died in the first four months of this current conflict than the entire 10-year Vietnam War. Local journalists in Gaza continue to risk their lives at the frontlines of the story. Yet like much of the civilian population, they are battling starvation, lack of shelter, and shortages of food and water. Many journalists are living under canvas, shifting from tent to tent as the conflict engulfs more of Gaza, while others sleep in school buildings with thousands of other displaced people. They lack protective gear, and sometimes are unable to charge their phones or laptops or replace damaged equipment. Every cent donated will be distributed through the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, the official affiliate of the IFJ, to provide material support for journalists in Gaza to continue to be able to do their jobs.

    Support for Afghan journalists

    In 2022, MSSF aided Afghan women journalists who were forced to go into hiding or to flee the country after the Taliban takeover. In conjunction with Network of Women in Media, India and Associated Press (AP), a fundraiser entitled Journalists for Afghanistan, raised money by selling prints of AP photographers’ images of Afghanistan. MSSF distributed funds to 43 Afghan women journalists in Afghanistan, and Pakistan and Turkey where some had fled to safety.

    MSSF also helped a Pulitzer Prize winning photographer who had fled Afghanistan and who was on a temporary Crisis Visit Visa in New Zealand and unable to work. MSSF supplied two months’ rent while he awaited the processing of his application to move to the United States.

    Image: Afghan children enjoy the view overlooking Kabul Image by Pulitzer Prize-winner Anja Niedringhaus who was killed in Afghanistan on April 4, 2014. Credit: AP and Journalists for Afghanistan fundraiser

    Assistance to Ukrainian journalists

    In 2022, MSSF supported two Ukrainian journalists who needed short-term assistance to get established in Australia following the Russian invasion of their country.

    Support to TV journalists sacked in PNG

    Also in 2022, 新萄京娱乐 via MSSF provided financial and other assistance to 25 TV journalists at EMTV in Papua New Guinea. On February 25, 2022, 新萄京娱乐’s National Media Section committee condemned the termination of the journalists who walked off the job in support of a colleague, amid allegations EMTV had engaged in intimidation and political interference. The committee resolved: “新萄京娱乐 stands in solidarity with the journalists.” 新萄京娱乐 called on EMTV executive management to reinstate the journalists on full pay and guarantee EMTV’s editorial independence.

    The affected staff sought financial support from the MSSF to challenge their suspension and dismissal under sections of the PNG constitution which deal with media freedom and freedom of expression and under the Employment Act 1978 (Division 4A Written Contracts) and Employer clause (Breach of Contract). On March 25, 2022, MSSF agreed to make payments to support the affected staff, and to assist with legal fees.

    Afghan Photojournalist

    On May 12, 2022, MSSF agreed to support a Pulitzer Prize-winning Afghan photographer/journalist residing in Wellington, New Zealand, pending the outcome of his application for a Green Card to work in the US. The photographer had fled Afghanistan in 2022 and was in New Zealand on a Crisis Visit Visa which meant he could not work. He sought limited financial assistance for housing and health costs for a short time as he waited for the Americans to process his case. MSSF agreed to provide assistance through E tū, the New Zealand journalists’ union, which would also provide other forms of support for the photojournalist.

    Burmese journalists in exile in Thailand

    Since the military coup in Myanmar in February 2021, independent journalism there has been forced underground. Journalists have been beaten and shot, at least 85 have been arrested, more than 40 detained and several jailed for up to three years. Independent media outlets have been stripped of their licences to operate, and dozens of warrants have been issued for the arrest of other journalists.
    Burmese journalists are in hiding not only in Myanmar but elsewhere in the region, seeking safety from persecution and violence. However, Thailand has just sentenced three Burmese journalists to seven months jail and fined them for entering the country.
    Despite all these risks, Burmese journalists courageously continue to work underground in Myanmar or Thailand to ensure the crimes of the military junta are revealed to the rest of the world.
    The Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance is working with the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand to provide emergency financial support to exiled Burmese journalists working on the Thai-Burma border. Please help with a small donation through the Media Safety & Solidarity Fund.

    Nepal children’s summer camp

    The annual highlight of the Nepal Children’s Education Fund was a three-day summer camp. About 30 children are assisted through the program, which was established in 2010 to help the children of journalists who have been killed since the transition to democracy began in 2005. To date, this financial support has been $181,472 (including administration fees paid to the International Federation of Journalists).


    Trauma and journalism training course in Nepal

    trauma-e1459397626546-414x265In April and May 2015, Nepal was hit by a serious of devastating earthquakes that left 6,000 dead. The media in Nepal was forced to work in make-shift shelters. Through MSSF financial support given to the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ), a three-day, trauma and journalism workshop was held to better equip journalists to report during and after natural disasters. Read the full story on the IFJ Asia-Pacific website.

  • Media Safety & Solidarity Fund, 2022-23 financial accounts


    Balance as at July 1 86,609 68,698
    Funds raised during the year 46,959 159,926
    Payments made during the year (23,533) (142,015)
    Balance as at June 30 110,035 86,609

  • You can make a secure online donation to the Media Safety & Solidarity Fund through PayPal:

    Or you can make an electronic bank transfer to this account:

    Account Name: 新萄京娱乐 Donations
    BSB: 082-080
    Account Number: 813138058

    Make sure to refer to MSSF in your transfer.

Journalism is a dangerous job.

Support the MSSF and you are supporting press freedom