Category Archives: Danielle Aumord

Danielle’s story

After studying at The London School of Journalism Danielle became a freelance journalist, working for various publications, including The Guardian, Mixmag and Time Out.

Unfortunately personal issues got in the way of her blossoming career and she lost confidence in her writing ability. So when the opportunity to join the Big Issue online journalists came up Danielle jumped at the chance to rehome her skills, get her confidence back and reignite her journalistic career. She explained:

“I hadn’t been working for a while because of family, personal and housing problems when my employment coach at Crisis called me and told me about the course. While I had already trained as a journalist we thought it was a good idea for me to go on it and develop my photography skills some more, because photography was something I wanted to take further.”

While Danielle initially joined the course as a photography trainee working in a journalistic environment quickly reignited her passion for writing and she quickly began engaging in both activities, writing about wider social issues important to her, alongside the social enterprises and charities she interviewed as part of the training. Speaking about the effect the course had on her personally Danielle said:

“I found the training very useful in terms of sharpening my skills and improving my confidence again in terms of writing”

As well as helping Danielle regain her skills and confidence as a journalist the development of her networking skills has proved to be equally important in kickstarting her career and it was at a training session at Thomson Reuters Foundation that Danielle learn’t the importance of social media networking for journalists. She recalled:

“The session on photojournalism and how to use Twitter more effectively was really helpful, as it showed me how we are living in an age where journalists have to be online as well as front line,” adding: “I feel that since the training course I have been much more confident [using social media] and have been able to use Twitter and Linkedin to network and arrange interviews”

Through contacts made on the course Danielle has gone on to work for Thomson Reuters Foundation, The Big Issue and Poached Creative. Speaking about her career moving forward Danielle said:

“One of the things I learn’t on the Big Issue training course with Poached Creative was the importance of your online presence, so I’m just finishing off what I would call my online strategy as a journalist. It has taken me some time but I have now finished my website and have a flickr account for my photography work. Through these online platforms I hope to reach out and make new contacts.”

Today Danielle is working part time at Answers From Big Issue and freelancing for Thomson Reuters Foundation.

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St Giles Trust, breaking the cycle of re-offending

 

IMG_1164

Pic: Danielle Aumond

 

By Danielle Aumond

Making my way through winding turns of tower blocks, I navigate towards a small office tucked away underneath the A40 flyover. I have an appointment with one of St.Giles Trust’s clients.

Sheriff is 16 years old. He came out of prison three months ago. This time around it was for ABH (actual bodily harm). He’s been ‘away’ twice before this sentence or ‘bird’ as he calls it.

“I was involved in a gang in West London, which I joined when I was 13-years old.  I didn’t see it as a gang. It was more like a group of friends that I got along with,” Sheriff explains. Continue reading

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The Crisis Cafe

Cake or pie anyone?

Pic: Danielle Aumond. Cake or pie anyone?

By Danielle Aumord

The Crisis Skylight London Cafe is perched on Commercial Street in the heart of the city’s financial district and in stark contrast to many of the local eateries, this is a cafe with a mission.

The cafe takes on trainees with the aim of developing skills and gaining qualifications, to enable them to move on into stable, paid work.

And as I enter into this lively hub, the trainees are busy producing healthy, homemade food and coffees. One is even giving testimony to the results of his hard graft training here – he’s now got a full time, paid job starting in a few days time.

Trainees work both in the kitchen and behind the counter.

Trainees work both in the kitchen and behind the counter.

Crisis' plight to end homelessness goes hand in hand with assisting clients to develop skills leading to paid employment.

Crisis’ plight to end homelessness goes hand in hand with assisting clients to develop skills leading to paid employment.

Trainees learn about general health and safety as well as food hygiene.

Trainees learn about general health and safety as well as food hygiene.

The Crisis Cafe pride themselves on serving their customers delicious, healthy meals. They also use seasonal, local and ethically sourced food where possible.

The Crisis Cafe pride themselves on serving their customers delicious, healthy meals. They also use seasonal, local and ethically sourced food where possible.

Tony makes a coffee. The skills that he's developed at Crisis have paid dividends - he now has a paid job to move onto.

Tony makes a coffee. The skills that he’s developed at Crisis have paid dividends – he now has a paid job to move onto.

 

 

 

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Monique Villa, the heart behind Thomson Reuters Foundation

Monique Villa - Chief Executive of Thomson Reuters Foundation

Monique Villa – Chief Executive of Thomson Reuters Foundation. Photo by Danielle Aumord

By Nazira Ahmed

“We have today in 2013 the biggest number of slaves in history. You cannot stay indifferent, you have to take action” Monique Villa, Chief Executive of the Thomson Reuters Foundation passionately states.

The Thomson Reuters Foundation provides training for journalists in developing countries, media training for non-government organisations (NGOs) and runs Trust Law, which works with law firms to provide free legal advice to NGOs and social entrepreneurs. Continue reading

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Training at Thomson Reuters Foundation (Week 5)

Photo by Danielle Aumord: Monique Villa - Chief Executive of Thompson Routers Foundation

Photo by Danielle Aumord: Monique Villa – Chief Executive of Thompson Routers Foundation

This week started off with an amazing visit to the headquarters of Thomson Reuters Foundation. Located in Canary Wharf, the foundation is the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, the global news company and provides legal, humanitarian and journalistic services around the world.

We were lucky enough to take part in a unique training session with Tim Large, the foundations Editor-In-Chief and Corinne Podger, the Business Development Manager and were also able to interview CEO Monique Villa. Continue reading

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It’s All About Me

It's All About Me

Out of approximately 5,000 children seeking adoption each year, half are left languishing on the National Adoption Register (NAR), often within unstable foster care placements. Heart-wrenchingly, up to 80% don’t get adopted.

A new scheme called ‘It’s all About Me’ (IAMM) seeks to reverse this trend by offering therapeutic training to adoptive parents, with the key aim being finding permanent homes for  ‘difficult to place’ kids. Continue reading

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Dalston in transition

 Photography by Danielle Aumord

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Week 2: Jumping in

This week the trainee hacks on the Big Issue have been looking at the idea of writing for an audience, the pros and cons of this, with a few debates thrown in. Interesting stuff…

Whilst there are a number of budding investigative scribes on the scheme who would prefer to be blowing lids open on injustices and abuses within care homes, pupil referral units, and the likes thereof, essentially Answers From Big Issue is about having a look at community based schemes, projects and initiatives that are filling a gap or providing much needed solutions to problems within local communities and wider society as a whole (which is a good look too).

So with Answers From Big Issue being the online publication that we’re writing for in the here and now, we consider our readers: a cross section between public sector and community based workers, marginalised souls that identify with the vision behind The Big Issue and a sprinkling of everyone else to boot!

In light of this, I began to strive forwards developing my story, which focuses on ‘difficult to place’ children languishing in foster care. My dad had many carers as a child, and in light of that, this is an issue very close to my heart.  I’ve also had experience of mentoring children in care for Kensington & Chelsea council, therefore I’m more than aware of the technicalities and problems faced by this client group.

Week 2 also included:

* Identifying ten tips for effective writing, further tips for writing for the web and a look a various features that we would hold up as good examples in terms of journalistic writing (for mine I picked:

* A brainstorming session around what makes news and a look at how to contrast headlines.

* Applying the inverted pyramid (a system for presenting news in a story) through a very simple diagram sheet and an exercise in putting together a basic news story.

And finally, we began to navigate through the world of press releases and PRs to work on the stories we’ve been briefed to. A bit of mean feat with the sweltering heat. But hey, gotta crack on with the job and file copy!

As for me, I’m looking forward to next week’s sessions: Not so much to the fact that it might touch 35 degrees in London, but to get stuck into some photo-journalism projects because I love the way that a picture can tell a story that words often can’t.

By Danielle Aumond

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New approach to ‘Crisis Intervention’

‘Action for Children’ will receive financial investment worth £825,000 from the ‘Big Society Capital’ to enable them to provide intensive, early intervention work for 380 vulnerable young people aged 11-16 years in Essex, who are at risk of being taken into custody or care.

It’s hoped that participants will stay at home and that their family relationships will be strengthened. Another aim of the project is that the young people would develop skills to enable them to cope better with a crisis.

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