Laura Payton is 2015 recipient of annual R. James Travers Foreign Corresponding Fellowship



Canada’s significant investment in maternal, newborn and child health in developing countries  is focus of  2015 R. James Travers Foreign Corresponding Fellowship

On behalf of the Fellowship Awards Committee, Carleton University’s Susan Harada, associate director of the School of Journalism and Communication, announced that Laura Payton of CBC News is the recipient of this year’s $25,000 R. James Travers Foreign Corresponding Fellowship.

The announcement was made at Carleton’s annual Kesterton Lecture. Carleton administers the fellowship established in memory of Jim Travers, a prominent Canadian foreign correspondent, editor and columnist for more than 30 years.

“The fellowship received a wide range of story ideas from 28 applicants touching on global issues that have far-reaching impacts,” said Harada. “During the selection process, we singled out proposals that addressed topics that are important to Canadians and that have the potential to impact public policy.”

Payton plans to examine whether Canada’s significant investment has made a positive impact on maternal, newborn and child health in developing countries. The amount of money and time spent on this initiative, not to mention the laudable goals, make this of interest to all Canadians.

“It’s an understatement to say I’m honoured to have had my pitch chosen for the Travers Fellowship,” said Payton. “To have the opportunity to travel and meet with the people affected by Canada’s aid program, and to be able to devote weeks to exploring the subject, is a rare chance I won’t take for granted.”

In the coming months, Payton will travel to Ethiopia and Tanzania to visit Canadian-funded projects and look at failure and success stories.  She will co-ordinate with international development groups that receive Canadian funding, such as UNICEF, Care Canada and Plan International Canada, to visit projects in rural and remote communities and get a sense of how aid is delivered, and to speak to the intended beneficiaries.

Is Canada’s foreign aid focus working? A series of articles written by Laura Payton and published by the CBC

About Laura Payton

Payton represents the next generation of Canadian journalists, equally adept at breaking news in print, radio or on live television. She thrives on the challenge of digging up secrets that those in power don’t want revealed. She has a knack for getting people to talk to her.

Payton has been navigating the halls of Parliament Hill since 1999 and covering Canada’s commitment to maternal, newborn and child health since Stephen Harper first announced it in 2010.

In 2011, Payton revealed the Canadian International Development Agency would provide $6 million in funding for the International Planned Parenthood Federation. It was a surprise after a protracted debate in Canada over whether the government would fund abortion services through its foreign aid, and after a government MP had said the organization had been defunded.

Payton is a senior online writer with CBC News. She works on Parliament Hill and serves on the executive of the Canadian Parliamentary Press Gallery.


Laura Payton accepts 2015 Travers fellowship


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