We started the Mencap Journalism Awards to encourage discussion and raise awareness of issues surrounding learning disability.

We want to encourage the journalists of tomorrow to write about issues surrounding learning disability, as well as allowing those with a learning disability to have a greater voice in the media.

This is a fantastic opportunity for aspiring journalists aged 26 or under to have your work reviewed by some experienced journalists on our judging panel, as well as getting your writing published. We're also offering some fantastic cash prizes to our winners and runners up. 

Your entry could be a piece of broadcast journalism (suitable for radio, television or online) or a piece of print journalism, which could be news, an investigative piece, an interview or a feature piece that would be appropriate for publication in a tabloid, broadsheet or a consumer outlet. 

How to enter

We're inviting journalists aged 26 and under to submit their entries for the Mencap Journalism Awards by Friday 29 March 2019.

We ask that all entries explore learning disability and the topics that are of relevance to the work and ethos of Mencap.

Written submissions should be 800 to 1000 words long, or multimedia pieces (for radio, television or online) should be between 3 to 5 minutes long.

You can enter by providing your details and uploading your piece using our online form.

Go to the form

Entries must be submitted by Friday 29 March 2019

Our judges will then review the submissions select a winner, who will be announced on Monday 13 May 2019.

If you have any questions or problems with your submission please email mencap@blj.co.uk.

We look forward to receiving your entries!

The prizes

We've got some fantastic cash prizes available to the winners and runners up of each category.

A cash prize of £1000 will be awarded to the winners of each category.

£700 will be awarded to the runner up in each category. 

£500 will be awarded to those in third place of each category.

Mencap will also use the winning submissions on their website, and in other PR activities. Mencap will retain publishing rights to all entries made.

We'll invite all winners to a prize giving ceremony at Mencap's head office in London, attended by all the judges in our prestigious panel.

The judges

Our judging panel combines experts from the fields of journalism and learning disability.

To receive expertise and insight from these individuals is a fantastic, money-can't-buy opportunity.

Jan Tregelles

Jan began working for Mencap in 1996, and is now our CEO. She believes families should be placed at the centre of our work. 

Jan is an authentic, warm and approachable voice who is extremely knowledgeable of her subject.

Dean Meuleman

Dean works as a Communications Assistant and Spokesperson at Mencap. He has a passion for learning disability representation in the media.

Eve Pollard

Eve Pollard is a journalist and broadcaster who starter her career as Fashion Editor of Honey. In 1985 she was the launch editor-in-chief of Elle magazine USA, and in 1986 she edited the Sunday magazine for the News of the World, followed by You magazine for the Mail on Sunday.

Eve edited the Sunday Mirror from 1987 to 1991 and the Sunday Express from 1991 to 1994. She has also worked in television series, creating the series Frocks on the Box and was appointed a member of the Competition Commission's Newspaper Takeover Panel in 1999.

Her publications include Jackie, a biography of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (1971), and she has jointly written a further four novels. Eve has covered all Royal Weddings since Princess Anne's in 1973 and frequently appears on the radio. 

She launched Women in Journalism in 1990 and remains Honorary President. Since 2003 Eve has been Vice Chair of Wellbeing of Women and first London Chair of Reporters Sans Frontieres (RSF). Eve was made OBE in 2008.

Hugh Pym

A financial and political journalist, Hugh Pym has been one of the leading commentators on the banking crisis and the British economic recession. He now works for the BBC. 

Hugh was a BBC radio journalist from 1986 to 1987, then producer of Business Daily at Channel 4 (1987 to 1988), correspondent with ITN (1988 to 1998) and a freelance broadcast with Sky Television (1999 to 2000).

He was a BBC special correspondence covering Economics until 2008 when he took on the role of acting Economics Editor. In March 2014 he was appointed as Health Editor.

In the 2001 General Election he stood as a parliamentary candidate for the Liberal Democrat Party in the North Wiltshire constituency. He has also written four books, the latest of which is called Inside the Banking Crisis (published by Bloomsbury 2014).

Ted Young

Ted Young has worked for the Harrow Observer (1983), The Northern Echo (1985), Today (1988), Daily Mail (1995), The Sun (1999), Daily Express (2002), London Lite (2005 to 2009), MailOnline (2009 to 2012), the New York Daily News Online (2012 to 2014) and Metro (2014 to present).

Ted was appointed editor of Metro in April 2014, replacing Kenny Campbell. A month before he joined the newspaper, parent company DMGT separated production of Metro newspaper and www.metro.co.uk, moving management of the website to MailOnline. This meant Young's editorship would be focused entirely on the print and tablet editions. A different editorial team was established to run the website.

Following a series of change under Ted, including a redesign and expansion of its publication regions, Metro became the highest circulation newspaper in the UK in March 2018.

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