Support young journalists through Covid-19

by PressPad in London, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 16th December 2020 we successfully raised £15,494 with 464 supporters in 28 days

#PressPadRemote, launched in response to the coronavirus pandemic, is needed more than ever. Help us support young journalists online!

by PressPad in London, England, United Kingdom

 New stretch target

Any extra money will go towards paying for Covid-related tweaks to our host-marketplace website. Let's all be honest, it doesn't seem like this pandemic is going anywhere... :( 

PressPad is an award-winning social enterprise on a mission to make entry into the exciting world of journalism more accessible than ever.

The Challenge

With diversity a more pertinent and important topic than ever we are proud to play a part in supporting the aspiring journalists of tomorrow hack into a historically competitive industry, overcoming barriers such as; sex, gender, ethnicity, disability and financial constraints.

In a pre-COVID world we successfully linked young people with work experience placements in London, supported by experienced journalists who offered a spare room plus great advice, support and mentorship.

When the pandemic hit, we had to embrace the new normal and overcome further challenges that were impossible to anticipate;

  • 61% of employers had to cancel internships as a result of the pandemic.
  • Newsrooms closed their doors and working from home became the norm rather than an exception further limiting opportunities.
  • Mass redundancies and hire freezes were implemented by many as a result of losses in ad revenue.

Our Covid-response programme 

Our committed team rose to the challenges, adapted our model and diversified our support with the launch of #PressPadRemote, delivering unprecedented results which included; 


  • 11 masterclasses on a wide range of topics from imposter syndrome to mobile journalism.
  • 118 CV/Pitch clinics hosted by our founders.
  • 14 live Instagram Q&A’s with rising stars in journalism.
  • 4 speed mentoring events held remotely on Zoom connecting the aspirational with the accomplished.

A huge benefit in a challenging time was being able to widen our reach, grow our network and make support more accessible than ever.


By the end of the first lockdown we were proud to have supported in excess of 7,800 young people at a time when, for many, hopes were fading. 

Attendees provided overwhelmingly positive feedback and many went on to get commissions and even jobs, crediting PressPad with helping them;

  • Qais Hussain – Student from Bradford found our support “indispensable” he learned a number of new skills resulting in him connecting with and writing for his “dream publications”.
  • Sophie Kiderlin - Freelance journalist found the remote sessions “incredibly valuable” leaving her both ‘inspired and motivated”, she expanded her knowledge and network while receiving “a lot of great advice”.
  • Georgina Truss wrote to our founder on Linkedin -  “Just wanted to drop a message to say Thank you! I had a CV clinic with yourself a few months ago...then I got my first ever interview and I got a job from that first interview!”
  • #PressPadRemote Masterclass attendees via twitter wrote -  “Thanks for being there through these frustrating times @PressPadUK - More of this” and “Just attended the loveliest free journalism careers session on zoom, thank you so much @PressPadUK, it was so refreshing to get advice from someone who seems to really understand what it's like to be a student."


The additional services provided by #PressPadRemote and the huge success of Season 1 have consolidated our purpose and mission to remove financial and geographical barriers of entry to the media professions and show the long-term need for PressPad.

Don’t just take our word for it 

In addition to supporting over 7,800 people in a 3.5 month period this year we have won numerous awards, amassed a huge following online with almost 12,000 followers on Twitter and an ever growing audience across other social platforms, built partnerships with esteemed brands including PinkNews, Cision and The Financial Times, and received widespread acclaim from industry leaders;

  • "This is a very good idea indeed." Laura Kuenssberg, BBC's political editor 
  • "Disappointingly, journalism is falling behind other bastions of elitism such as law and banking, which are doing more to redress glaring inequalities. This despite the fact that the skills needed – an eye for a story and tenacity – can be found in any age, race, gender, class or background. This makes innovations like PressPad, which aims to link hosts offering accommodation to wannabe journalists, so important." Jane Martinson, Guardian columnist
  • “I've just found out about @PressPadUK - something I could not believe in or want to support more. Had my parents not lived in London, I wouldn't have been able to do nine months of unpaid journalism internships after graduating. This can't be the only option for young writers -” Dolly H Alderton - author, journalist and podcast host
  • "PressPad provides a practical solution to a problem that distorts our media. Affordable accommodation enables working-class, refugee and less privileged people to get a start as journalists, so newsrooms will be less dominated by the wealthy and well-connected." Lindsey Hilsum, Channel 4 News international editor
  • “It’s an incredibly impressive initiative” Amol Rajan, BBC's media editor & presenter of Radio 4’s The Media Show


But perhaps most importantly we’ve identified a healthy appetite for us to build on our good work to date offering online support to those that need it until work experiences return and the economy recovers.


What’s next for PressPad?

We have been hugely successful in supporting young journalists and connecting them to leading journalism professionals who are willing to mentor and provide pass on their knowledge. In order to continue this important work to provide this support for free to those who need it in an increasingly challenging climate, we need your support.

We have ambitious plans for 2021 that will see us return - as soon as Covid allows - to hosting, via our marketplace platform which we built during lockdown using the funds raised from our #DiversifytheMedia fundraising,  but we also intend to leave no young journalist behind and launch the highly anticipated second season of #PressPadRemote. 

We're asking the same young people who benefitted from Season 1 to decide what is most important for them while designing the new programme. We want to make sure that we’re only spending our supporters’ money on what young journalists really need. 

Funds raised will facilitate the costs of the first four months of activities, providing, at a minimum:1606849218_4_(1).png

#PressPadRemote Season 2 will supercharge our original mission, continue where Season 1 left off in a bigger, bolder, more accessible way, reaching people that need it more than ever. 

Highlights include: exclusive 1-2-1 career clinics, bi-weekly peer networking and mental health check in sessions, early-career webinars, pitching workshops with commissioning editors, off-the-record, quick-fire social Q&As with inspiring mid-career journalists and networking events.  


With your help #PressPadRemote can continue to inspire hope in the journalists of tomorrow and remove financial and geographical barriers by providing motivation, community, training, mentorship, and professional and personal connections. 

We want to support a diverse media network without barriers that truly reflects the demographic and economic diversity within our communities. And we know you want to do that too. 


How can you support us?

Your financial donation is vital to our mission and is gratefully received and hugely appreciated by both PressPad and those we support.

As well as feeling great about supporting our cause you can enjoy a number of rewards as a token of our appreciation, just check out the right hand side of this page. 


We are an ambitious social enterprise and a little of your support will mean a lot to us and even more to those from disadvantaged backgrounds, please DONATE TODAY.

 You can request more information or even book a call with our team to discuss further, just follow this link

Thank you

The PressPad team.


"PressPad is such an amazing scheme and I feel honoured to be a part of it. It has made me feel like my dreams are achievable and no longer out of reach. I feel like someone is finally on my side."

PressPad Intern

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This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£15 or more

100 of 150 claimed

A Virtual Evening Q&A Special with Dolly Alderton

Now the High Low is over, how will you get your Dolly fix? Well, luckily for you, in aid of PressPad & supporting young journalists, she's making herself available for one night only in January for all our crowdfunder donors. Pay the suggested ticket price or "pay what you can" to get in on the action! Only available through our crowdfunder!

£10 or more

A #PassItOn Social Media Shout Out

Spare us a tenner to help PressPad provide our Remote services to even more young people shut out of their chosen career. If you benefited from #PressPadRemote Season 1, pay it forward and donate so the programme can continue to be free for everyone. We'll shower you with praise on our socials!

£25 or more

27 of 50 claimed

PressPad Tote Bag OR Mug with Diversitea logo

For £25 you can get your hands on one of our exclusive PressPad tote bags or mugs with our call for more Diversitea emblazoned across it.

£40 or more

8 of 25 claimed

30mins Career Clinic with the PressPad team

We delivered 118 free CV and pitch clinics in just a couple of months. Many went on to get commissions and jobs off the back of them. Show your support for PressPad Remote & get some career advice at the same time.

£50 or more

3 of 25 claimed

PressPad Tote Bag AND Mug with Diversitea logo

For £50 you can get your hands on one of our exclusive PressPad tote bags AND a mug with our call for more Diversitea emblazoned across it.

£75 or more

1 of 20 claimed

30mins Portfolio Website Consultation

What does every young journalist need? A portfolio website is high up on the list. We've entrusted the generosity of PressPad supporter and website designer/branding expert Nathan Bankhead (designer of One World Media, PressPad & Rory Peck websites).

£100 or more

2 of 15 claimed

CV Revamp

Busy hustling? Get your CV entirely reworked, rewritten, and designed by PressPad's founder Olivia Crellin. Complete with one set of edits. Start 2021 with your best foot - and resume - forward! *All those who buy this reward will be placed in a lottery with the chance to win a LinkedIn consultation with 'Start Being Visible' branding consultant & former journalist Mildred Talabi + a copy of her recent book (Worth £197)

£150 or more

2 of 20 claimed

1hr Mentoring Session with a PressPad Host

Advice and coaching from some of the best in the business - delivered over zoom or phone. Mentor line up TBC!!

£175 or more

1 of 10 claimed

EXCLUSIVE: Journalists' Squarespace Web Design Kit

Know what you want & ready to go with your portfolio website? Limited offer from Ruby Lee of Studio 77 for 10 pre-installed Squarespace website design kits complete with extensive training (Normally costs: £199). This one on offer is designed specifically with copywriter & print journalists in mind:

£280 or more

1 of 10 claimed

Company Reward: Webinar Delivery Training

Are you or your company struggling to catch up with moving all your events online? The PressPad team will teach you how to put on an online events series that will attract thousands of attendees! If you're really desperate we'll even run an event for you complete with social promotion so you don’t have to worry about the logistics (Non-Media friendly!)

£400 or more

2 of 3 claimed

Weekend Away at Welsh Borders Farmhouse B&B

Cancelled holidays because of lockdown? Looking for an economical staycation for 2021? Snap up a long weekend in the rural bliss of the Welsh borders in Herefordshire. Sleeps 6 - 3 double bedrooms. Available for next 12 months excluding June. Pictures on request.

£500 or more

0 of 6 claimed

Company Reward: Sponsor a Season 2 Webinar

Are you trying to attract the brightest and the best to apply for your media company's schemes and internships. Struggling to get your opportunities in front of dedicated and talented young people? Sponsor and choose the topic of a PressPad Remote Season 2 webinar and take over our social platforms and audiences for the evening. See how engagement and take-up differs from when you do it yourself ;)

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