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Optical | Health and expertise | Press release | Entries open for (LOCATION) budding poets and authors

Entries open for (LOCATION) budding poets and authors

21 february 2018

Press release

A LOCAL opticians from (LOCATION) is encouraging would-be writers and poets to submit prose to a national Creative Writing Competition run by the charity, Carers UK.
Specsavers is sponsoring the competition for the third year. The Carers UK campaign, supported by the Poetry Society and the Reading Agency, is looking for compelling stories and poems that explores the relationship between health, connectedness, and caring for a loved one.
Guided by this year’s theme, “Keeping well, keeping connected”, writers are invited to enter poems or short stories by 31 July 2018.  First place winners stand to win £100 in high street gift vouchers and £125 to spend on eye care and glasses at Specsavers.
Individuals can submit two poems that are up to 40 lines long and one short story of up to 1,000 words. Entries will be judged by the award-winning poet, Cheryl Moskowitz, who reprises her role as judge for the fifth year running.
The winning and commended poems and stories will be announced in September 2018.  Those making the shortlist will also see their work included in the charity’s anthology that launches in November.  This special collection comprises stories, poems and photography selected by Carers UK staff, volunteers, trustees and Specsavers.  The anthology will be launched at a Creative Writing Celebration event in central London, with proceeds of the anthology going to Carers UK.
Specsavers ongoing support of the writing competition campaign aims to increase awareness of its home-visiting service to individuals who are unable to make it to a store unaccompanied. 
[Insert name], store director of Specsavers in [insert location], says: ‘Through the power of poetry and story-telling, Carers UK can convey very special messages around the importance of connectedness for those experiencing isolation and living life with health issues.
‘This year’s theme of ‘Keeping well, keeping connected” really resonates with my Specsavers colleagues in (LOCATION) who make home visits every day to conduct sight and hearing tests for those who are home-bound and unable to visit our store.
‘Our colleagues regularly hear a wide range of inspirational stories that deserve to be told. We hope that this year, as with the last, that this competition encourages people to recognise the importance of home care, and to come forward for support if they have care needs themselves.’
Heléna Herklots, Chief Executive of Carers UK, concludes‘Almost all of us will care for, or be cared for ourselves, at some point in our lives. Yet a lack of understanding around the realities of looking after a loved one can often make it difficult for friends and family members to recognise that they are entitled to support. As in previous years, the winning poems and stories will play a vital role in helping carers to identify with the writing of others and come forward for information that could help them.
‘Last year, we were overwhelmed by the quality of entries, with many of the most moving works being submitted by entrants with more caring than writing experience. This year, under the theme “Keeping well, keeping connected” we would like to encourage more carers than ever before to put pen to paper and use creativity to highlight the many realities of caring.’
Deadline for entry is 31 July 2018.  Visit www.carersuk.org/creative for more information.  For practical advice and information about caring, visit the Carers UK website on www.carersuk.org or email advice@carersuk.org.
To find out more about Specsavers home visits, call 0800 652 4948 or visit www.specsavers.co.uk/home-eye-tests.
- Ends -
Issued by Beattie Communications on behalf of Specsavers (LOCATION)
Notes to editors
About Specsavers
  • Specsavers is a partnership of almost 2,000 locally-run businesses throughout the world -all committed to delivering high quality, affordable optical and hearing care in the communities they serve.
  • Each store is part-owned and managed by its own joint venture partners who are supported by key specialists in support offices
  • More than 36 million customers are registered with Specsavers and the partnership had a turnover of more than £2.2bn in 2016/17
  • More than one in three people who wear glasses in the UK buy them from Specsavers
  • Specsavers is a champion of the National Health Service – of its 22.2m customers in the UK, 55% are from the NHS and the company is the largest provider of free NHS digital hearing aids
  • Specsavers supports several UK charities and is in partnership with RNIB for a public awareness campaign to transform the nation’s eye health.
  • Specsavers runs a home-visiting service in the UK and Ireland for those who cannot get to their local store unaccompanied. 
About Carers UK
  • Carers UK is a charity led by carers, for carers – our mission is to make life better for carers.
  • Cares UK give expert advice, information and support
  • Carers UK connect carers so no-one has to care alone
  • Carers UK campaign together for lasting change
  • Carers UK innovate to find new ways to reach and support carers