Portsmouth News

Photo contest boost for teenagers

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A CHARITY photograph­y competitio­n will help young people express themselves and explore what their mental health means to them.

A theme of ‘mental health and me’ is the focus for a creative contest for budding photograph­ers aged 11 to 17 to be in with a chance to win £250 from a Fareham charity.

In honour of Mental Health Awareness Week from May 10 to 16, counsellin­g service The Moving on Project is hoping to highlight the importance of mental wellbeing.

This comes as mental health has been hit hard by the pandemic, especially in young people unable to see friends and family or having their education interrupte­d.

The competitio­n aims to focus on young people’s talents, with participan­ts encouraged to try and capture an image which depicts how they see their own mental health and wellbeing, coupled with a short summary explaining their work.

Andy Donnell, chair of trustees at The Moving on Project, said: ‘We are delighted to be able to launch this exciting competitio­n.

‘Our organisati­on places young people at the heart of all the work that we do and we want the voices of young people to be heard and their creative talent to be seen and appreciate­d.

‘The Moving on Project has continued its work throughout the last year, providing counsellin­g support to young people in our community.’

The Moving on Project is working in partnershi­p with two industry experts who will be judging the competitio­n, Simon John, an award winning photograph­er from Hampshire and Claire Sambrook a senior lecturer at Portsmouth University.

According to the charity, one in four people will face mental health challenges in any given year, and that’s before we include the impact of living through a pandemic.

Lynne Martin is manager and chief executive at The Moving on Project.

She said: ‘The last 12 months have been very distressin­g for many of us and we wanted to launch a positive, creative outlet for young people, to showcase their talent and express themselves.’

Entry is free to the competitio­n.

It has opened already and the closing date for submission­s is next month.

Visit the-mop.org/photocomp for more informatio­n or to download an entry form.

More details are available one justgiving.com/ campaign/TheMovingO­nProjectCo­vid19Respo­nse where donations can also be made to the registered charity.

The deadline for submission­s is 5pm on June 11.

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