Why I'm an RPT Associate

Why I'm an RPT Associate
Thursday, 09 January 2014 Written by Alex Crawford

In September Alex Crawford, Sky News’ Special Correspondent, became an Associate of the Rory Peck Trust. Here she talks about her respect and admiration for freelancers, and why she supports RPT. 

Wherever I have reported, from places like Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, the Middle East and the ‘Arab-Spring world’, I have been indebted to the army of freelancers who have toiled alongside me in the most difficult and challenging of situations.

They’ve helped me, engineered access for me, organised interviews with the people who count, got me out of the brown stuff, been fantastically brave and been an incredible inspiration all round. Somehow they have tolerated me and educated me to boot – usually for very little financial gain and at tremendous potential cost to their lives, families and well-being.

I look at some of the journalism produced by freelancers and finalists at the Rory Peck Awards and I leave feeling knocked-out by the bravery, the tenacity, the determination and the sheer skill and talent of some of these individuals and teams.

Perhaps the greatest compliment I can pay to the Trust is to tell you a short story about my family. I had gone with my partner Richard and our four children to Varanasi when we lived in India – and the programme Firing Line, produced by BBC World every year featuring the finalists of the Rory Peck Awards, was on the TV. My children watched it with mouths wide open as they learned about babies being sold in Afghanistan, young women being mutilated in Kenya and the witch children of the Congo.

My ten year-old daughter Maddy was so overwhelmed by it, she returned to her school to start fund-raising immediately for the witch-children.

I am delighted to lend my support to the Trust. It does tremendous work not only highlighting the work and role of freelancers – but giving them practical help and assistance when it’s difficult to get large media organisations to take responsibility.
 

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