Why do so many award-winning journalists write for World and Media?

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Six members of a men's group in Kenema, Sierra Leone run by IRC. They are working to change men's attitudes and stop violence before it starts. Photo: Niamh Griffin, who travelled to Sierra Leone with support from the Simon Cumbers Media Fund.

Every journalist that has produced original work for worldandmedia.com to date has won an award – for their work for us, or for their prior or subsequent writing: Niamh Griffin, Senan Hogan, Joe Humphreys, Sally Hayden, Ruairi Kavanagh, Paul Loughran, Joseph O’Connor, David Ralph and Lar Boland (forthcoming). Why is this and why have so many of those journalists contacted us with story ideas?

We would like to think that the quality of our service attracts high-quality journalists. We have over a hundred subscribers working in the Irish media, as well as journalists and editors working for the BBC, the Guardian, Deutsche Welle, Al Jazeera, Al Araby, Sky News Arabia, IRIN, the BBC World Service, Independent Online (South Africa), The Nation (Kenya), The Express Tribune (Pakistan), New Age (Bangladesh), and Nouvel Horizon (Mali).

We would also like to think that the advice we offer to journalists that write for us, or who contact us for assistance with work they are doing for another publication, is of some benefit.

More importantly, perhaps, several of the excellent journalists that have written for us have kindly proselytised on our behalf to other journalists.

There is one other factor, though. They have all received awards from the Simon Cumbers Media Fund. The fund was set up in memory of Irish journalist Simon Cumbers who was shot dead in Saudi Arabia while working with the BBC. The Irish Aid-funded scheme is a fantastic one, in our view. It has supported a lot of superb journalism and it has helped journalists to overcome one of the biggest barriers to writing about international development – the cost of travel.

World and Media was set up with a very similar purpose: to make it easier for journalists to produce high-quality development coverage.

The deadline for the 2014 winter round of the the Simon Cumbers Media Fund is today. However, our service and online resources (including diary announcements of funding opportunities) are available to journalists all year round (sign-up for updates here). We are always open to story pitches from journalists at any stage in their career and from any country, whether they are applying for funding or not. We also welcome analysis and opinion pieces related to international development and/or its media coverage from those with something interesting to say – whether journalists, academics, aid workers and/or voices from developing countries.