By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor
In honour of World Press Freedom Day, we bring to you la Maison des Journalistes (MDJ), a French non-profit organization that offers shelter and support to journalists forced to flee their home countries. The MDJ was founded in 2002, and has since housed more than 250 journalists from 54 different countries. Maison des journalists offers courageous journalists a temporary home and the help they need to rebuild their lives.
The first role of the organization is to recognize individual journalists and the sacrifices they have made in the name of press freedom and human rights. It works to ensure that they are not forgotten or left to their own devices upon arrival in a foreign country, whose language many of our residents do not speak. Men and women come to the Maison des Journalistes during a particularly difficult time in their lives and many are dealing with serious physical and psychological scars.