A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of observing a meeting of the NHS Volunteers Taskforce which, in addition to looking at volunteering across the entirety of the NHS, has been looking at the winning idea from the 2021 Heywood Prize competition about building a territorial type army of volunteers for the NHS.
The idea, submitted by Geoffrey Cruikshanks, was in response to our call for entries for people to identify a key challenge or opportunity presented by the Covid-19 pandemic and how we might solve or capitalise on it. Over 2000 entries were submitted many of them ingenious and I’d encourage everyone to have a look, at least at the winners and runners up (https://heywoodfoundation.com/winner-and-runner-ups/). We were delighted to award a total of 30 prizes worth £66,000 last year. One prize remains unclaimed – another reason to check out who won!
Having been looking through these entries recently, I’m excited to informally announce that the Heywood Prize is returning for 2022, but we’re mixing things up a little…
The competition will formally launch early September and I’d strongly recommend that you keep an eye on this blog and follow @HeywoodFndation on Twitter for official announcements. But a few details to help you start considering what you may submit…. whilst anybody can (and we hope will) submit an idea, this year we are actively encouraging more youth entries by having additional prizes for entries from those under 21. We’d also be keen to see suggestions from groups of people. Entries this year will be accepted in text, video, pictures, or audio to make entering as easy as possible.
The biggest thing I can let you in on though, is the question. The last competition focused quite clearly on opportunities or challenges presented by Covid-19 and whilst Covid is still clearly an issue we are going to be dealing with for a while, we are keen to open up the competition to any challenges or opportunities, and the solutions you have for them, that you think the Government should take up to improve life in the UK.
Well hopefully that’s enough to whet your appetite for now. Keep an eye on this blog or Twitter for future announcements!