WaterAid India launches its annual Media Fellowship Program

The media fellowship in its second consecutive year aims to create awareness around water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) issues in the country.

Theme of the fellowship

By 2020, 21 major cities in India will run out of groundwater, affecting 100 million people.

Today, India is in the midst of a major water crisis. Close to half the country, about 600 million people, face high to extreme water stress and about two lakh people die every year due to inadequate access to safe water.

Urban water is complex & under-reported

Water problems in urban India

As WaterAid India strives towards making clean water accessible for everyone, everywhere, ‘WASH Matters 2019 Media Fellowship’ will encourage selected fellows to document stories on the reality of access to clean water in urban areas.

The stories should highlight under-reported aspects on the theme of urban water. 

Meet the jury

Jury 1

Jury 2

Jury 3

Who can apply

  • Print, online, television and photo journalists interested in water and environment issues.

  • Applicants should have minimum three years of experience as a media professional.

  • Associated with a media house or independent media professionals.

  • Applicants should be Indian media professionals, residing in India.
  • Previous experience in reporting on WASH and environment or related themes/topics will be an advantage.
  • Journalists from regional and vernacular media are encouraged to apply.


  • Publish a minimum of three in-depth long format stories during the fellowship period.
  • Attend an introductory workshop with WaterAid India to understand the theme. 
  • Travel to minimum two field sites (not necessarily WaterAid India intervention areas) in the country.
  • Each selected fellow will have to sign a detailed Terms of Reference.
  • The stories may or may not be limited to WaterAid India’s interventions but must contribute to the larger dialogue on the theme.
  • The selected candidates will be expected to publish/broadcast long format investigative/ human interest stories, features or photo essays.
  • In case of print or online stories, the stories should preferably be in long format, a minimum of 1,200 words for dailies, 2,000 words for online/magazines. In case of video, it should be exclusive long format content for broadcast platforms (minimum 5-7 minutes each).
  • After the field/site visits, the candidates are expected to share a draft version of their stories with WaterAid India.
  • The fellows must acknowledge the support of WaterAid India when they publish or present their stories elsewhere. Please use the following text - WaterAid India ‘WASH Matters 2019’ Media Fellowship Program.
  • Post the fellowship, the articles/reports become the joint property of WaterAid India and the fellow.
  • Once published, the stories would also be published on WaterAid India’s website www.wateraidindia.in
  • Fellows would be encouraged to promote their stories on social media platforms.
  • WaterAid India has the right to question the deliverables and can stall payment if the fellow has not delivered in line with the expectations.

What's more?

Here is all you need to know to apply

To apply, please submit the following
  • Curriculum vitae

  • Statement of purpose (not more than 500 words)

  • Letter of recommendation

  • Letter of assurance from the media house to publish the stories

  • Two references with contact details

  • Five samples of published work

  • Professional achievements, if any

Duration of the fellowship

The fellowship will be from July 2019 – March 2020 where fellows will be requested to keep WaterAid India in loop regarding the theme, location and travel required for the stories.


The fellowship is of INR 1,00,000 per fellow. This is inclusive of travel, accommodation, site visit and other miscellaneous costs. The disbursal of the fellowship amount will be in three installments – 30% on being selected as a fellow, 40% on the publication of first two stories and remaining 30% on the publication of the third story (a TDS component of 10% would be applicable on this payment).

Selection process
  • Fellows will be shortlisted by the jury panel consisting of WaterAid India and eminent media personalities. 

  • Six fellows will be selected for the final fellowship grant.

  • The fellows will be informed through a mail and the names will also be announced on WaterAid India’s website.

  • WaterAid India reserves the right to not award any fellowships if applications do not meet a basic minimum standard.

  • All decisions taken by WaterAid India will be final.

Apply by 01 July 2019

In case of any queries,

Contact our Media team
WaterAid/Prashanth Vishwanathan

Apply for WASH Matters 2019

Interested to document stories on India's urban water situation? Fill in the form below and if selected, we'll get back to you.