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We run our Creative Writing Competition to get to the heart of what it means to care – the joys that can be experienced, the learning that comes with caring, and the way it changes us.

Since we started in 2014 we're received over a thousand entries, from both experienced writers and people who have never written a poem or short story before.

Open to everyone, the competition is a great opportunity to raise awareness about caring. The Poetry Society have helped us promote the competition widely.

Here's what some of the participants in the Creative Writing Competition have told us:

"It's a great support for carers to have a competition reflecting so may perspectives."
Wendy Orr
"Moving beyond belief, but oh such true words."
Susan Smith (Carers UK volunteer)

Cheryl moduleThe judge

Award-winning poet Cheryl Moskowitz has judged the Carers UK Creative Writing Competition for two years running.

Cheryl was born in Chicago, Illinois and moved to the UK in the 1970s. She regularly facilitates writing projects in the community, co-founded LAPIDUS, the Writing for Wellbeing organisation, and helped to set up and teach on the Creative Writing and Personal Development MA at Sussex University from 1996-2010. She is currently teaching a course, ‘Growing Poems from Thought’ for The Poetry School and is Poet in Residence at Highfield Primary School in North London for the academic year 2014-15.

She has won a number of awards for her work, including the Bridport Prize, International Hippocrates Prize for Poetry and Medicine, Kent and Sussex Poetry Prize, and the Magma Editors Poetry Prize, 2014. Her publications include novel Wyoming Trail, poetry for children Can It Be About Me? and poetry collection The Girl is Smiling. You can read more about Cheryl's work on her website

Before judging our second Creative Writing Competition Cheryl told us:

No one should have to care alone and no story that needs to be told should go unheard. I am delighted to be presiding, for the second year running, as judge for the Carers UK Creative Writing Competition 2015 and look forward to receiving all of your poems and stories on that subject. In this, the 50th anniversary of Carers UK it seems fitting to mark the year with writing that might illuminate, like the candles on a birthday cake, and celebrate the multifaceted and sometimes hidden aspects of the caring world.

If last year’s entries are anything to go by I know I am in for a treat. I am expecting to be excited, surprised and moved again this year in unexpected and extraordinary ways by what I read. And it is especially pleasing to know that a competition such as this can make it possible for these poems and stories to reach a much wider audience. The staged presentation of the winning entries in London at the Carers UK National Summit 2014 was such a memorable event and the beautiful publication of the anthology Family, friends and carers means that all these contributions, and more, can continue to have a long lasting effect.

The Brazilian novelist and lyricist, Paulo Coelho said: Writing means sharing. It's part of the human condition to want to share things.

I look forward to immersing myself in reading the kind of writing that demands to be shared, to discover poetry and stories where words have conspired with the imagination to convey experience, increase understanding, and communicate feelings that might otherwise never have been known.

- Cheryl Moskowitz May 2015

Read Cheryl's poem The Definition of Things »

If you have any questions about the competition, please send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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