A message from our
new Executive Director

Dear friends,

For nearly 30 years, the Rory Peck Trust has been supporting freelance journalists around the world – often the truthtellers exposing injustice, holding the powerful to account and bearing witness to history. Whether providing training to help navigate the dangers freelancers face, or providing financial and mental health support when things go wrong, the Trust has been there for thousands of journalists. Today, I’m privileged to become the Trust’s Executive Director and I wanted to begin by writing to thank you for your continuing support, and to introduce myself.

RPT is an extraordinary organisation, supported by an incredible staff. I’ve been involved with the Trust for nearly two decades, as the foreign editor of BBC News and ABC News, then as Managing Director of RTÉ News and most recently as a Trustee. From Afghanistan to Syria, Gaza to Sudan, I’ve seen first-hand how journalism coming from freelancers helps us to better understand our world – and the contribution they make to protecting our press freedom. I’ve also witnessed the contribution the Trust makes to theirs.

These are difficult days to be a journalist, particularly a freelancer. The Committee to Protect Journalists says more than 100 journalists and media workers have been killed in the past 12 months, the deadliest period to be a journalist since records began. Most, of course, have been killed in Gaza, Israel and Lebanon. But too many have also lost their lives elsewhere – in Honduras, Myanmar, Bangladesh, the Philippines and of course Ukraine, just to name a few. Increasing our support to those scarred by war, wherever they are, is a priority for us in the months ahead.

On May 3rd we will mark World Press Freedom Day. For almost three decades, the Rory Peck Trust has played a vital role in the fight for media freedom, supporting the freelancers on the frontline of that struggle. Today, they need us more than ever. Thank you for all the support you give them – and us. It’s our lifeline – and theirs – and I look forward to working with you in the months and years to come.

All the best,