Trainers and mentors

Jessica Smith, director of Poached Creative

Jess began her career as a journalist in regional Australia and later became internet editor with Australian  Associated Press (AAP).  She founded Poached Creative in 2009 to provide a stepping stone into communications roles for people who have been long-term unemployed. With more than 12 years of working in media, charity and non-government organisations, she is committed to empowering individuals through quality training, mentoring and industry experience. Jess has developed and taught communications programmes for AAP and NHS Employers, the BBC Hackney Academy, Hackney Council, Peabody and in-house at Poached Creative.

Visit the Poached Creative website

Glenn McMahon, journalism tutor

Glenn McMahon is a freelance news journalist. He has extensive domestic and international reporting experience. He has worked in Israel, Egypt and across the UK. Glenn has taught digital reporting for Visionon.tv and YH World and brings with him recent experience as a journalist on local London newspapers.

Read Glenn’s blog – The Meddler

Zoe Childerley, photography tutor

Zoe is a freelance professional photographer. She has a decade of experience in the arts and third sector and her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally.  She is currently a senior lecturer on the Photography and Video BA undergraduate course at De Montfort University. Zoe brings a variety of relevant  and practical expertise to the online journalism training course.

Visit Zoe’s website

Veronique Mistiaen, features writer

Veronique is an award-winning freelance journalist who writes about development, human rights, the environment and social issues. Her work is frequently published in The Guardian, The Economist, The Times, The Telegraph, Reader’s Digest, The Huffington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The San Francisco Chronicle, The New Internationalist, Cosmopolitan, Reader’s Digest and other publications. She is also a lecturer in Journalism at Arcadia University’s College for Global Studies in London.

Read Veronique’s blog – The Right Human

Tobias Priscott, training co-ordinator and writing mentor

Tobias is a visual artist and writer who has been working on community arts and social enterprise projects for the last three years. He completed Poached Creative’s in-house training programme in July 2011 and continued as a volunteer writer for Healthy Planet. In 2012 he took up paid freelance work for Poached updating Business in the Community’s social enterprise website and has since worked on a number of projects for Social Enterprise UK and NHS England.

Adele Watts, photography mentor

Adele Watts is a photographer and arts facilitator based in London, UK. Graduating from Southampton Solent University with a First Class Honours degree in Photography, Adele has continued to achieve extensive experience and success as a practitioner, developing personal projects alongside facilitating participatory photographic projects, both nationally and internationally. She is the founder of DISPOSABLE, a photography collective and participatory project that aims to support people affected by homelessness through the creative engagement with photography and art practice. Adele has recently exhibited at Four Corners Gallery in October 2013 and March 2014. 

Visit Adele’s website

Grant Kingsnorth, writing and communications mentor

Grant joined Poached Creative after seven years of being homeless or vulnerably housed.  He quickly demonstrated his aptitude for writing on our in-house training programme and has since been a regular writer for the Hackney Citizen. Grant also completed a work experience stint at the BBC and sits on the board of local homelessness charity, North London Action for the Homeless. His interpersonal skills are a huge asset to the Poached Creative team and trainees on our courses. His personal experience of unemployment and homelessness ensures that we maintain an accurate understanding of these complex issues.

Read Grant’s blog – In My Shoes

Michelle Stannard, writer and content producer 

Michelle has held several roles at Poached Creative including freelance writer and content producer. She was also editor for youth website YH World, who share the same office. Michelle’s work has been published on a wide variety of websites and blogs. Her personal blog, The Alt Entertainer attracts thousands of hits each month. Her articles have been published in the Hackney Citizen and Hackney Today. Michelle holds a Creative Digital Media Apprenticeship and enjoys sharing her media skills with trainees.

Read Michelle’s blog – The Alt Entertainer

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