The 'WRITE WELL' competition is an enterprise that celebrates and affirms the value of personal writing and reflection for young people to support their mental wellbeing.
The competition has been a dream of mine for the last two years. The idea formed while attending Debora Harding’s online book launch (which took place during the lockdown) for her beautiful memoir Dancing with the Octopus. She explained that during one of the more challenging times in the writing process while she was trying to find her way through her emotional experiences to discover her narrative voice, her daughter encouraged her with the words: “you have a story to tell”. As a teacher, I was struck by how simple and powerful and also how hopeful that message would be for so many young people. Recent evidence has shown how much writing as a pastime is declining amongst children and young adults and I felt that we are well placed in the teaching profession and perhaps particularly in our school, to make a contribution to trying to turn that around.
St Swithun’s is a school which has worked really hard to gain its reputation as a place where young people’s well-being is placed at the heart of their education. In starting WRITE WELL we feel really strongly that we want the competition to be inclusive and supportive and to have a heart for social justice. We are therefore embarking on a social enterprise we hope might contribute to a national conversation about how writing can support young people’s wellbeing.
Naomi Anson head of English St Swithun’s School
For entry details click here
To meet the judges and watch videos with hints and tips click here.